Charities relieved after Canada Revenue Agency says additional reporting for ‘internal trusts’ not needed

“This is…a good example of why there’s a need for a home in government for the charitable sector.”

Why It Matters

Some charities had feared new Income Tax Act rules would require them to provide additional reporting that was difficult to collect and could hamper fundraising. But experts say these concerns have now been alleviated.

Charity leaders are breathing a little easier after the Canada Revenue Agency said Friday it would not require charities to provide more detailed information for so-called internal trusts in their annual tax filings. 

“It’s a big relief,” said Bernadette Johnson, director of advocacy for Imagine Canada, the charitable sector’s largest association, which had been pushing for clarity on the issue for months.  

The concern stemmed from legislation passed in December 2022, which amended the Income Tax Act to require additional reporting on trusts to combat tax evasion and other financial crimes. 

While the legislation exempted trusts that qualified as charities, it did not explicitly exempt so-called internal trusts, such as donor-established scholarship funds, some donor-advised funds, and other donor-restricted funds. 

Johnson said that some com

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