Print

Government filings

Every nonprofit is required to maintain its corporate status with the Government of Ontario.

This page explains what forms nonprofits must file with the government to keep their corporate status and how to file them through the Ontario Business Registry (OBR).
Some forms must be filed every year; others need to be filed when certain people or things change at a nonprofit.

This page also explains what forms have to filed with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
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 transition to the new rules. 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.

What forms must nonprofits file?

You need to file the following information with the Ontario government:

You do not need to report changes to your bylaws in Ontario unless you are a charity.

Registered charities must file new or updated by-laws with Canada Revenue Agency once they have been approved by the board and confirmed by their members.

You need to file the following information with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)

Unless you are a registered charity, you must file a T2 Corporation Income Tax Return with the CRA every year. You may also be required to file a T1044 nonprofit information return if you meet certain criteria.

Registered charities must file a T3010 Registered Charity Information Return each year.

What is a notice of change?

A notice of change is an update to the public record about major changes in a nonprofit.
You file a notice of change form when you change your nonprofit’s:

  • registered address
  • directors
  • officers

You don’t need to fill out the whole form, only the sections that need to be updated.
Changes to your directors and officers must be reported to the Ontario government within 15 days. For example, you must do this when a director or officer is elected, appointment by the board, or resigns.
You can file this form yourself online using the OBR or by mail. Or you can use an authorized third-party provider to file it for you.
To mail in your notice of change, print and fill out this form and mail it to the address on the form.

You must first have access to the OBR. If you don’t have access, this page explains how to get access.

Step 1: Log into your My Ontario Account.
Step 2: Select the profile of your nonprofit corporation.
Step 3: Select “Make Changes”.
Step 4: Select “Notice of Change”.
Step 5: Complete the contact information. Click “Continue”.
Step 6: Enter the primary activity of the corporation.
The primary activity can be found on your T2 Corporation Income Tax Return.

Step 7: Enter the official nonprofit email address.
Some nonprofits use the email address of the person authorized to make changes on behalf of the nonprofit as their official email address.

Step 8: Make changes to the registered office address.
If there have been no changes to your registered office address, click “Save and Continue”. If you need to update your nonprofit’s registered office address:

  • Click on the “Change Registered Office Address” button
  • Choose the “Enter address manually” button
  • Type in the new address, as instructed on the next page
  • Click “Done”.

Step 9: Make changes to directors and officers.
If there are no changes to the directors, click “Save and Continue”.

If you’re adding directors who have been newly elected or appointed, click on the “Add a Director” button and fill out the box as instructed.

The “elected date” is the date that the directors was: (i) elected by the members, or (ii) appointed by either the directors or members. Click “Done”.

If you’re “ceasing” a director who has resigned or stopped serving as a director for another reason, find the entry for that person from the list and then enter the date that the director stopped being a director. Click “Done”.

Click “Save and Continue”.

Then you will be taken to the Officers section. You add and remove officers the same way as you add and remove directors.

Click “Save and Continue” when finished.

Step 10: Certification.
Here you say who is certifying the filing.

This means that they are confirming that the information being filed is true.

If this person is a current director or officer, choose the name of the individual from the drop-down list provided.

If the person certifying the filing is an employee, such as the executive director, choose that option and type in the person’s name. Then, select the box beside the statement “The individual named above has certified that all information set out in this filing is true, correct and complete”.

Click “Save and Continue”.

Step 11: Review.
Review the information you entered to make sure it’s correct. Select “Generate PDF” button to get a pdf document of the information you’re about to file.

The name of the person certifying the filing shows up beside the check box that says “I <Name> confirm the accuracy of the information submitted.

Click the “Submit” button.

What is a corporate annual return?

A corporate annual return is a form your nonprofit must file with the Ontario government every year.

Some of the things the corporate annual return asks for include:

  • administrative information such as your name and email address. This information will not be made available to the public.
  • the names of new directors or officers and the date they were elected or appointed.
  • the dates any directors or officers stopped holding office (the form uses the word “cease” to mean the date that the director or officer stopped being a director or officer).
  • the name and address of the person who confirms that the information you submit is accurate.

Much of the information in the form is what you include in a notice of change.

As long as it is within the 15-day deadline, you can use your corporate annual return to update information you usually have to file a notice of change for. For example, let’s say you plan to file your corporate annual return on September 30 and on September 20 a director resigns. You don’t have to file a separate Notice of Change. You can update that information in your corporate annual return.

If you don’t file your corporate annual returns, the Ontario Government can dissolve or close down your nonprofit.

You can file this return yourself, online using the Ontario Business Registry or by mail. Or you can use an authorized third-party provider.

To mail in your corporate annual return, print and fill out this form and mail it to the address on the form.

The corporate annual return is not a tax return. You must still prepare your corporations financial statements and file an income tax return separately.

A registered charity is required to maintain its corporate status to keep its charitable status. If the Government of Ontario dissolves your nonprofit because you did not file your corporate annual return, it means you lose your corporate status. Then the Canada Revenue Agency can revoke your charitable status.

You must first have access to the Ontario Business Registry. If you don’t have access, this page explains how to get access.

Step 1: Log into your My Ontario Account.

Step 2: Click on the “Filings” tab to see if your nonprofit is up-to-date with its corporate annual filings. If it is not, you will need to file corporate annual returns for previous years.

Step 2: Complete the “contact information” page.

Step 3: Select the year that you’re filing the corporate annual return for.

Step 4: Make changes, as needed, to the tabs that need to be updated: directors, officers, or registered office address.

Step 5: Select Certification: fill out the certification tab and generate a pdf for your files.

Step 6: Click “Submit”.

You will receive an e-mail when the return is processed by the Ontario government.

Maintaining records: notice of change, corporate annual return and tax returns.

No. There are 3 ways to file a notice of change. You can:

To update your information to send in a return by mail: print and fill out out this form and mail it to the address on the form.

But before you file by mail, the Ontario government recommends you order your profile report. This allows you to find out what information the government currently has for your nonprofit in its records.

It’s important to know this because if some of the information you fill out on the form doesn’t match what the government has, it can lead to problems. For example, the government may create a duplicate record for the same director or officer. Fixing this problem can take a lot of time and effort.

There is no government fee to file a notice of change or corporate annual return online.

If you fill out and mail the forms yourself, the cost is only the postage fees.

If you use an authorized third-party provider, the fees will be what they charge.

It’s important to inform the government about past changes in your nonprofit.

Use the OBR to find out the last year that your nonprofit filed an annual corporate return. You can find this in the “Filings” section of the website.

The OBR only allows you to file one year at a time. So if you need to file several years of corporate annual returns at the same time, you have to file by mail.

But before you file by mail, the Ontario government recommends you order your profile report. This allows you to find out what information the government currently has for your nonprofit in its records.

It’s important to know this because if some of the information you fill out on the form doesn’t match what the government has, it can lead to problems. For example, the government may create a duplicate record for the same director or officer. Fixing this problem can take a lot of time and effort.

It’s important to follow ONCA rules and maintain your corporate status.

If you don’t keep your information up to date you cannot start a court case.

The government also has the power to fine individual directors. But it rarely does this.

All Ontario nonprofit corporations except registered charities, are required to file a federal T2 Corporation Income Tax Return. Even if your nonprofit is exempt or excused from having to pay federal income tax, you still have to file an tax return every year.

Some nonprofits also need to file a T1044 Non-Profit Organization (NPO) Information Return with the Canada Revenue Agency.

Nonprofits may have to pay some taxes, for example, a municipal property tax. Get advice from a tax professional with experience in nonprofit law.

Registered charities must file a T3010 Registered Charity Information Return each year.

If you haven’t filed your income tax return for a few years, you may want to contact a lawyer or accountant who has experience in nonprofit law for help.

ONCA says your corporate address must be a physical address in Ontario. And it must be registered in the Ontario Business Registry. A P.O. Box address is not considered a valid address.

For more information visit this page.

Reviewed: 2024-02-08