The CRA has just released Charities Connection #5 with information on the new T3010-1 Registered Charity Information Return, highlights from some recent Guidance Documents, information on their upcoming consultations and speakers kits that anyone can use to educate groups about wise giving. The biggest piece of information is confirmation that the T3010-1 is essentially similar to the T3010B but certain minor changes are made to the form to comply with the recent disbursement quota changes announced in March 2010.
Charities Connection CRA News, Information, and Events Specific to Registered Charities
Charities Connection is an electronic publication that has replaced the Registered Charities Newsletter. This new electronic publication is more concise and gives registered charities information on technical issues, new guidance and policy changes, CRA initiatives, and reminders.
No. 5 - November 2010
•The new Form T3010-1, Registered Charity Information Return
•The Charities Directorate’s guidance documents
•Giving to charity: Information for donors – Speaker’s kit
The new Form T3010-1, Registered Charity Information Return
The 2010 federal budget proposed several measures affecting registered charities. Most significant are the changes to a registered charity’s disbursement quota. The Registered Charity Information Return has been revised to reflect these changes.
We will begin mailing the new Registered Charity Information Return package in January 2011 to charities that have a fiscal year ending in December. The package will include:
•Form T3010-1, Registered Charity Information Return
•Form TF725, Registered Charity Basic Information Sheet
•Form T1235 (09), Directors / Trustees and Like Officials Worksheet
•Form T1236 (10), Qualified Donees Worksheet / Amounts Provided to Other Organizations
Private foundations will also receive Form T2081, Excess Corporate Holdings Worksheet for Private Foundations.
Registered charities that are incorporated, amalgamated, or continued in Ontario and subject to the Ontario Corporations Act will also receive Form RC232-WS, Director/Officer Worksheet and Ontario Corporations Information Act Annual Return. Charities that file Form RC232-WS must also complete the information on the back of Schedule 7 for each director, but they do not have to complete Form T1235 (09).
A charity’s Registered Charity Information Return must be filed no later than six months after the end of its fiscal year.
In January 2011, an updated Guide T4033-1, Completing the Registered Charity Information Return, will be available on our forms and publications pages. Guide T4033-1 is an important tool that will help you complete Form T3010-1. For a paper copy or help finding or working with the electronic version of the guide, call the Charities Directorate at 1-800-267-2384. For definitions of the key terms used in the guide, please see the charities glossary.
Keep checking our Web pages for updates and more information related to the new measures affecting charities.
The Charities Directorate’s guidance documents
Whether you are applying for charitable status or are already operating a registered charity, it is important to understand how and why we at the CRA’s Charities Directorate make decisions. Our guidance documents explain how we interpret and apply the Income Tax Act and relevant case law.
Guidance documents are developed or revised to either explain or reflect changes to the legislative environment for charities or to capture feedback that we have received. For example, we are currently conducting a year-one review of the guidance on Fundraising by Registered Charities. We will update this document based on the review of feedback from the charitable sector, the public, and internal stakeholders.
Recent guidance documents include the following:
Research as a Charitable Activity
The guidance on Research as a Charitable Activity outlines the Directorate’s position on the legal and administrative requirements that a registered charity is expected to fulfill in conducting or funding research as a charitable activity.
Sports and Charitable Registration
This guidance document clarifies the circumstances in which a charity may use sports programs to further a charitable purpose, even though the promotion of sport itself is not recognized as a charitable purpose.
Upholding Human Rights and Charitable Registration
Released in May 2010, this guidance document explains how the Charities Directorate distinguishes between purposes and programs that uphold human rights, and political activity. This document will also be of interest to those who simply want to understand the legal context for upholding human rights as a charitable purpose.
Canadian Registered Charities Carrying out Activities Outside of Canada
Many organizations in Canada conduct activities abroad for a variety of purposes. Released in July 2010, this guidance document provides clear explanations on the “own activities” test, working with intermediaries, and keeping direction and control of resources.
We will soon publish Using an Intermediary to Carry out a Charity’s Activities within Canada.
We encourage you to familiarize yourself with all CRA policies and guidance that relate to your charity. If you have comments or suggestions to improve any of our guidance documents, we welcome your feedback.
We consult on our new guidance documents because your comments help us to develop policies and guidelines that are easier to understand and apply. We encourage you to share our draft guidance documents with individuals and groups who may not be regular visitors to our Web pages and who may be interested in contributing their views.
We will soon be launching consultations for the following guidance documents:
•Guidance on arts Organizations and Charitable Registration
•Promotion of Animal Welfare and Charitable Registration
•Charitable Purposes and Activities for Protecting the Environment
•Complementary and Alternative Health Services
As new guidance documents become available, they will be posted on the consultation Web page. You can also subscribe to our free electronic mailing list and be notified when new information is added to the Charities and Giving Web pages. Staying on top of new releases and revisions to existing policy products will help to ensure that you have the information you need to operate your charity effectively and remain compliant.
Giving to charity: Information for donors – Speaker’s kit
The CRA’s Charities Directorate has prepared a comprehensive speaker’s kit called Giving to charity: Information for donors to help you, your colleagues, and your donors, donate wisely.
The speaker’s kit is available free of charge to everyone who has an interest in educating people about giving to charity. It includes:
•four information sheets about donating to charities, which can be copied and distributed:
1.What is a registered charity?
2.How can charitable donations reduce my income tax?
3.How can I learn more about a registered charity?
4.How can I donate wisely?
•a slide show to help people understand more about donating wisely to charities
Giving to charity: Information for donors
•a CD of the above information so you can print extra copies as needed. You can also run the slide show from the CD.
The kits are available in English and French. To order a copy call 1-800-959-2221 or go to:
Giving to charity: Information for donors – Speaker’s kit
The speaker’s kit is part of the CRA’s ongoing public education initiative to help Canadians make informed donation decisions. To learn more about donating wisely, visit http://www.cra.gc.ca/donors.
Do you require legal advice with respect to Canadian or Ontario non-profits or charities?
Mark Blumberg is a partner at the law firm of Blumberg Segal LLP in Toronto and works almost exclusively in the areas of non-profit and charity law.