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New Societies Act now in effect

Societies ActEffective November 28, 2016, the Societies Act [SBC 2015] Chapter 18 (the “Act”) comes into force and governs how societies are formed and operate in British Columbia.

Societies are not–for–profit corporations and those existing prior to the Act coming into force will have until November 28, 2018 (2 years) to file a transition to be in compliance with the Act. A significant administrative update is the creation of Societies Online, a web–based application that allows for the online filing of most of the transactions and documents for societies.

Below are links to further information on the new Act and how to transition your society.

Government resources

By: Brian Stephenson, Pushor Mitchell LLP

More information about societies and what is required under the law

Specific legislation and regulations govern how societies (i.e., not–for–profit corporations) are created and run in British Columbia. Societies can choose to incorporate. Although not required by law, Societies can benefit from incorporating. When a society is incorporated, it acquires all of the capacity of an individual, as well as an independent existence—separate and distinct from its members—and an unlimited life expectancy. Once a society is incorporated, in order to maintain compliance with the Societies Act, an annual report each year must be filed and the society’s information kept up to date.

A society from outside British Columbia would need to register as an extraprovincial non–share corporation and maintain their registered status for as long as they operate in the province.

To read more, please visit Employment, Business & Economic Development’s page here.

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