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Upcoming deadlines and changes for charities and other not-for-profits

deadlines and changes for charitiesThere are several deadlines and changes on the horizon for charities and other not-for-profits (NPOs).

First, November 28, 2018, is the deadline for British Columbia NPO corporations to transition to the new Societies Act. An NPO which does not complete the transition by then will be dissolved, will cease to be a legal entity, will not meet the requirements of a charitable organization under the Income Tax Act, and Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) could revoke its charitable status. Given the favourable treatment which NPOs have with respect to income tax, property tax, and consumption taxes like HST/GST and provincial sales taxes, NPOs stand to lose a lot if they lose their status because they fail to transition by the deadline. Read more at www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/employment-business/business/not-for-profit-organizations/societies-act-transition.

Next, the CRA is delivering on its promise to modernize the charitable sector, through its Charities IT Modernization Project (CHAMP). Read more about CHAMP at www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/charities-giving/charities/guidance-videos-forms/champ.html. Consequently, in November 2018, CRA will provide new e-services under its CHAMP initiative, including online:

  • Application to register a charity – Form T2050;
  • Completion and filing of T3010 Registered Charity Information Return through CRA’s My Business Account; and
  • Updates of organization information by charities and correspondences with CRA’s Charities Directorate through the My Business Account.

Application to register a charity, timely and accurate filing of the T3010, and notifying the Charities Directorate of changes in a timely manner are all critical to getting and maintaining valuable charitable status. Effective November 2018, charities will be able to complete these procedures online.

Read CRA’s website at How to prepare for new e-services, for the essential steps to accessing the new services, including instructions on registering for a My Business Account, which is the portal to most online services.

Finally, CRA has changed its web address to canada.ca/charities-giving, and charities and other qualified donees must update donation receipts with the new web address by March 31, 2019. Qualified donees are registered charities and other entities which can issue donation receipts and receive gifts from registered charities. CRA’s name and correct web address are mandatory components of accurate and complete donation receipts. Accurate and complete donation receipts are critical to maintaining an organization’s status as a qualified donee. As of now, any new orders for pre-printed donation receipts should include the new web address – do not wait until 2019 to comply.

Apolone Gentles, JD, CPA,CGA, FCCA, Bsc (Hons)

Apolone Gentles is a CPA,CGA and Ontario lawyer and editor with over 20 years of business experience. She has held senior leadership roles in non-profit organizations, leading finance, human resources, information technology and facilities teams. She has also held senior roles in audit and assurance services at a “Big Four” audit firm. Apolone has also lectured in Auditing, Economics and Business at post-secondary schools. Read more here

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