This page explains how Ontario’s Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (ONCA) might affect you if you’re a charity.
If you incorporated before ONCA was proclaimed on October 19, 2021, your bylaws or articles may not comply with the rules explained below. You have until October 18, 2024 to review, update, and file your governing documents with the Ontario government. Until then, the rules in your articles and bylaws continue to be valid. This is true as long they were valid before the ONCA took effect.
Some nonprofits may have to revise their articles when they prepare for the ONCA. This is because the ONCA requires different things in articles than were required in the old letters patent.
Sometimes. When registered charities incorporated in Ontario make changes to their purposes or dissolution clause, for example, they need to be approved by:
- the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), and
- Ontario’s Public Guardian and Trustee (PGT).
Other changes registered charities may make to their articles must be filed with the CRA, but do not require the CRA’s approval.
Many nonprofits became charities and were approved by the Public Guardian and Trustee (PGT) and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) a long time ago. Charity law has changed over the years. You could lose your charitable status if your new articles:
- state the purpose of your nonprofit in a way that won’t be accepted by the CRA or PGT
- now include a purpose and activities that you didn’t have when you first registered as a charity
If you need to change your nonprofit’s purposes, consult the CRA’s guidelines on how to draft purposes for charitable registration.