Ontario’s Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (ONCA) took effect on October 19, 2021. Existing nonprofits have 3 years from that date to bring their governing documents into compliance with the new law. Until then, most of the rules in your governing documents continue to apply whether or not they comply with ONCA as long as they were valid under the previous law.
If your articles and bylaws are silent on an issue, you must now look to ONCA for the rule that applies.
Along with the new legislation, the Ontario government has launched a new online database and service that allows nonprofits to complete over 90 services online. For example, a nonprofit can now register, incorporate, order search products, and file their annual Information Return online.
CLEO’s bylaw builder helps nonprofits develop a set of bylaws that comply with Ontario’s Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (ONCA). The tool asks you questions, explains what your choices are, and includes information to help you decide. Then, based on your answers, it generates a set of bylaws for your nonprofit.
The Bylaw Builder is free to use and all text has been legally reviewed.
Every year, within 6 months of the end of their fiscal year, nonprofits must file an annual return with the Ontario government to make sure their information, such as name, headquarters and directors, is up to date on the public record. However, nonprofits whose 2021 annual filings were due between May 15, 2021 and October 18, 2021, were exempt from filing them as the government wanted to focus on launching the new Ontario Business Registry. Now that the Registry is up and running, nonprofits whose 2021 annual filings are due after October 19, 2021, are required to file their annual return.
The annual return is not the same as a nonprofit’s tax return. To learn more about what tax returns nonprofits need to file, visit Canada Revenue Agency.