There is a small category of qualified donees called "registered foreign charitable organizations that have received a gift from Her Majesty in right of Canada". Qualified donees are groups that can issue official donation receipts under the Income Tax Act (Canada) and can also receive gifts from other qualified donees such as registered charities. There were only 3 groups on this list but recently the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars was dropped from the list. So we are now down to 2 foreign groups on the list.
Here is a blurb on this category from CRA:
A foreign charitable organization that has received a gift from Her Majesty in right of Canada and is registered by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is a qualified donee for a prescribed period. As a qualified donee, it can issue donation receipts, and registered charities can make gifts to it.
Use the lists below to confirm whether a foreign charitable organization that received a gift from Her Majesty in right of Canada is currently registered as a qualified donee or whether it was previously registered or is one of the previous recipients of gifts from Her Majesty in right of Canada.
To find out about their obligations as qualified donees, go to Foreign charitable organizations that have received a gift from Her Majesty in right of Canada.
Currently, only the Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation and the The Rhodes Trust - Public Purposes Fund are still on the list.
The list provides the Federal government with an easy mechanism to help a foreign organization fundraise from Canadians. For example, if there was a natural disaster that hits a country then if the Canadian government made a donation to an organization dealing with that disaster in that country then shortly thereafter Canadians can donate directly to the foreign organization and receive an official donation receipt. As well, because this is completely discretionary on the Canadian government it allows them to do their due diligence and to decide which groups should receive such a benefit. My main concern with this category has been the lack of transparency as to how groups get onto the list.
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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.