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Canadian Charity Law List

March 2018


Upcoming Blumbergs’ Events for 2018 - Bootcamp, T3010 and Receipting

Our Charity law Boot Camp is full.  But if you are interested in transparency and receipting you might find these two upcoming programs useful.    

In June we will have a half-day seminar Fundamentals of the T3010 and Transparency for Canadian charities.  In September we will have a half-day Fundamentals of Receipting by Canadian charities.  Inaccurately completing the T3010 and improperly issuing receipts are the two most common compliance concerns for registered charities and these educational programs are designed to help charity directors, staff, and volunteers tackle these challenges.  Space is limited and these programs are not offered regularly - so if you think they could be of assistance to your charity then sign up now.  Learning about compliance requirements for charities through educational programs can save your charity lots of money on legal fees and avoid tremendous anxiety.  READ MORE

Upcoming Webinars for the Canadian Charity Law Association

The Canadian Charity Law Association is delivering some upcoming webinars. Registration is free but space is limited. With concern about problematic staff and harassment, you might want to attend the webinar "Minimizing Risk in your Onboarding of Volunteers and Staff". READ MORE

Exciting functionality being added to CharityData.ca

We are adding some exciting new functionality to CharityData.ca   First, it is easy to see what gifts a Canadian registered charity gives to another Canadian registered charity on the CRA website.  But what if you want to know which charities received funds from a particular charity?  Now you can do this on CharityData.ca by looking under the "Fundraising" tab.  Second, we are going to be updating the data used on the site to include all 2016 data and some 2017 data.  Third, we have added a number of new ways to search or sort all charities on the "Advanced Charity Search Page" Page.  There are now about 30 ways to filter or search.  Some of the functionality will be intermittent as it is tested and upgraded.   READ MORE

Prescribed foreign universities and the Canadian 2018 Budget

David Sherman, a very knowledgeable and respected Canadian tax writer and practitioner, had expressed a concern that the changes in the 2018 Federal Budget that were meant to have simplified the system for recognizing prescribed foreign universities may have the unintended consequence of not including all foreign prescribed universities that were currently on the list.  Finance recently released the Legislative Proposals Notice of Ways and Means Motions and Explanatory Notes.  In it they make certain additional changes to ensure that there is no question that all the foreign prescribed universities that were included on the list will be recognized.   READ MORE

CRA releases information on Universities Outside Canada - good news for foreign universities

Here is our article CRA releases information on Universities Outside Canada - good news for foreign universities.  This will be of interest to universities outside of Canada whether they are prescribed foreign universities or not. READ MORE

Canadian Charities and Terrorism: Protecting the Resources of Your Favourite Charity

In Canadian Charities and Terrorism:  Protecting the Resources of Your Favourite Charity we provide some suggestions for Canadian non-profits and registered charities to avoid having their resources misused by terrorists. READ MORE


CRA insert reminding Canadian registered charities about electronic filing and CHAMP.

CRA has been sending this insert in various mailings reminding Canadian registered charities that the new move to electronic filing of charity applications and the optional ability to file T3010s online is starting in November 2018.  Charities should start to prepare to use the new online facility by setting up a MyBA account if they don't have one already.   Charities can already use the MyBA for limited purposes such as changing their address online.    READ MORE

Recent CRA presentation on political activities by Canadian registered charities

Here is a recent CRA presentation on political activities by Canadian registered charities that has some good examples of allowable and prohibited political activities.  It was obtained through ATIP.  Some have complained that the examples in CRA's political activities guidance are dated. This presentation provides more up-to-date and relevant examples.  READ MORE

CRA media points on consultation panel report on political activities - May 3, 2017

Here is the CRA spokesperson's talking points for the Release of the Consultation Panel Report on the public consultations on charities and political activity.  READ MORE

Heavily redacted memorandum to PM Justin Trudeau from the PCO on the political activities audits

Here is a heavily redacted memorandum to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau from the Privy Council Office (PCO) on the political activities audits.  The memo was dated March 28, 2017. READ MORE

CHAMP - CRA backtracks on giving internal divisions separate BN numbers

CRA has noted on the Charities IT Modernization Project (CHAMP) page that internal divisions will be able to access the CRA online system without obtaining a new BN number.  In September of 2017 we blogged about developments relating to "head bodies" and "internal divisions".  Previously they had said that they will be issuing new distinct BN numbers to each internal division but now they will not. READ MORE

What type of charities were audited by CRA under the political activity program

Here is a CRA document we recently received through the ATIP system What type of charities were audited by CRA under the political activity program. It shows as of February 2014, of the 31 charities being audited, how CRA divided up the political activity audits in terms of the 4 heads of charity. READ MORE

CRA’s “Compliance Framework for Files with Identified Political Activities”

Here is a CRA document we recently received through the ATIP system Compliance Framework for Files with Identified Political Activities.  It explains how political activity audit files are identified by CRA, screening criteria used, and different types of audits that may be used depending on the screening finding.  CRA even has a cool infographic on sources and screening.    READ MORE

CRA internal PowerPoint to Audit Team conducting political activity audits

Here is a CRA document we recently received through the ATIP system CRA internal PowerPoint to Audit Team conducting political activity audits.   READ MORE

Posting New Content on the CRA’s Charities and Giving webpages

Here is a CRA document we recently received through the ATIP system Posting New Content on the CRA's Charities and Giving web pages.  If you are wondering how difficult it is for the Charities Directorate to even post the simplest information this chart will help.  The short answer - it is difficult.  While bloggers can put up information in minutes, the CRA system can take months, years and even decades to get a document published online.  I am still waiting for CRA to release their guidance on religion, the first consultation draft was done about 9 years ago! READ MORE

CRA Audit Plans and procedures for political activity audits

Here is a CRA document we recently received through the ATIP system CRA Audit Plans and procedures for political activity audits. READ MORE


Statistics Canada says total Canadian donations down in 2016

Statistics Canada has reported that "Total donations reported by Canadian tax filers fell to $8.9 billion in 2016, down 2.7% from 2015."  The Statscan numbers only are claims by individual tax filers and not what was actually donated to charity by individuals, corporations, etc. which in 2016 was $16.5 billion. READ MORE

Barry Bussey “Trudeau Liberals clearly don’t understand religious charities and their rights”

Barry Bussey published an op ed in The Province about the Canada Summer Jobs program and the reluctance of the CRA Minister to release it guidance on religion which has essentially been complete for a number of years.  READ MORE

Corporations Canada has made a giant leap forward in increasing transparency of Federal corporations

As you probably know if you are interested in a Federal corporation (non-profit or otherwise) you can easily search the Corporations Canada website.  This gives you lots of information on Federal non-profit corporations including the name, Corporation Number, Status, which corporate legislation governs, their registered office address, names and addresses of directors, the minimum and maximum number of directors, the last filing date of a corporation, whether filings are overdue, the history of the corporate names, as well as what corporate documents have been filed like Articles, By-laws, Financial Statements etc.   You could always request copies of documents and Corporations Canada was quite efficient in returning them within a day or two.   However, now Corporations Canada has made it even easier for you by making many of the listed documents available instantly.  READ MORE

Our directory of top resources for Canadian registered charities

Over the last 10 or more years, we have published over 2500 blog posts.  Except for a few avid readers, that might be a little overwhelming so we have started to create a directory of some of the top resources for Canadian charities.  This will be particularly helpful for those who are new to registered charity compliance issues or to the charity sector. READ MORE

Upcoming Blumbergs’ Events for 2018 - Bootcamp, T3010 and Receipting

Do you require legal advice with respect to Canadian or Ontario non-profits or charities?

Mark Blumberg

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.