On January 24, 2013, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) issued a revised T3010 Registered Charity Information Return and updated schedules and forms. The revisions reflect some of the new measures introduced in the 2012 Federal Budget and will impact charities’ annual information reporting, effective immediately. Charities with fiscal periods ending on or after January 1, 2013 are to use the new T3010(13) form, available here: [:link href=”http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pbg/tf/t3010/README.html”:]
Charities with fiscal year-ends December 31, 2012 or earlier will need to still use the T3010-1.
The majority of the changes to the T3010(13) pertain to charities that carry out political activities. The new T3010(13) requires charities to provide more details about the nature and extent of their political activities and describe how they are connected to their charitable purposes. Additional questions have been incorporated into section C5 and a new Schedule 7, “Political Activities.” In addition, charities must now report any gifts made to qualified donees (such as another registered charity) intended for political purposes. If charities receive gifts from foreign donors that were intended to support political activities, the foreign donor’s origin country and reason for the gift must also now be reported.
The CRA has also updated its guide, “Completing the Registered Charity Information Return,” which provides some examples of the details charities are now expected to disclose related to their political activities. The new guide is available at: [:link href=”http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tg/t4033/README.html”:].
“It is clear that CRA expects charities to provide comprehensive disclosure of the types of political activities they engage in and the resources devoted to them,” Barry W. Bussey, V-P of Legal Affairs stated. “Charities need to be aware that any resource they use to participate in political activities, whether it’s in the form of money, property, employees, or volunteers, has to be declared. Further, all political activity by a charity, from social media to public demonstrations, must be accounted for and linked to its charitable purposes. CRA was tasked by the government to increase transparency of charities’ involvement in political activities, and I think they have succeeded. However, it comes with increased administrative obligations for charities to remain in compliance.”
The CCCC team has analyzed the T3010(13) and accompanying guide and schedules, and has provided a detailed breakdown of their implications for charities, available here.