Social Impact

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group is the largest national team of legal experts in Canada dedicated to helping charities, non-profit organizations and social enterprises meet their legal needs and accelerate their social impact. Clients from philanthropic foundations to active charities to member-based associations depend on us to deliver strategies that propel them ahead of changing regulations, effectively address general legal issues, and design innovative structures that unlock sustainable new sources of revenue. The Social Impact Group offers unmatched experience and expertise across Canada’s voluntary sector and beyond. Our forward-looking advice helps clients anticipate and address all manner of legal issues and position themselves for long-term impact and success.

We offer services in both English and French and our clients range from national and international charities and non-profit organizations to social enterprises of all shapes and sizes. They include universities, colleges, schools, religious institutions and groups, hospitals, social agencies, environmental groups, member-benefit organizations, social clubs, trade and professional associations, and social housing organizations. Our lawyers are voluntary sector experts with front-line experience helping organizations achieve their mission.

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Susan Manwaring to appear before special Senate committee on charitable sector

Social Impact group lead Susan Manwaring has been invited to appear before the special Senate Committee on the Charitable Sector. The Committee is specifically looking into the funding of the charitable sector with a focus on new sources of funding...

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Miller Thomson lawyers recognized in The Best Lawyers in Canada 2019

In the just released 2019 edition of The Best Lawyers in Canada, 144 Miller Thomson lawyers from across the country have been recognized for their expertise in 47 areas of law. This includes 6 lawyers who were awarded “Lawyer of the Year” in...

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Miller Thomson recognized in 2018 Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory

In the recently released 2018 edition of the Canadian Legal Lexpert® Directory, 90 Miller Thomson lawyers across 35 areas of law have been recognized for their industry-leading advisory expertise.  These rankings are the culmination of an extensive annual peer review process...

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Susan Manwaring on federal panel of charitable sector experts reporting to Minister of National Revenue

Susan Manwaring served on the five-member Consultation Panel on the Political Activities of Charities that presented its report to the Minister of National Revenue at the end of March 2017, following extensive consultations with the public and the charitable sector. The report...

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Miller Thomson to release comprehensive Federal Budget review on March 22

Our in-depth analysis of the Federal Budget will be released later this week. Corporate tax lawyers Ron Choudhury and Rahul Sharma, and Social Impact lawyer Nicole D’Aoust will be at budget lock-up in Ottawa on March 22 to bring you the latest tax measures...

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New edition of Essential Law for Social Work Practice in Canada

Miller Thomson’s National Health Industry Group is pleased to announce the third edition of Essential Law for Social Work Practice in Canada. Individuals who need social work services have problems that are complex and multifaceted. To best serve their clients,...

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Miller Thomson partners on first federally-funded social impact bond

On October 28, 2016, Canada’s Minister of Health, the Honourable Jane Philpott MP, along with Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada (“HSFC”) and MaRS Centre for Impact Investing, announced Canada’s first ever federally-funded social impact bond (“SIB”). A SIB is...

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Susan Manwaring named to federal panel examining political activities of charities

Susan Manwaring, lead of the national Social Impact group, has been named to the consultation panel that will make recommendations to Minister of National Revenue Diane Lebouthillier in order to clarify the rules governing the involvement of registered charities in political activities. The panel,...

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Miller Thomson renames national practice group to reflect advanced social sector expertise

Click here to see the press release

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Special Edition: MT Federal Budget Review

Miller Thomson’s Tax Group has written a comprehensive review of the 2016 Federal Budget. Our tax lawyers provide insightful review of the Federal Budget’s impact on such issues as International Tax, Business Income Tax, Personal Income Tax, Charities and Not-for-Profit...

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Miller Thomson lawyers speak at Law Society’s Business Law Summit

Jennifer Babe chairs the Law Society’s 7th Annual Business Law Summit at which she will present her paper on Business Law Reform in Ontario. Natasha Smith speaks on Social Enterprise and Social Financing.

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Robert Hayhoe speaks on Charity and Not‐for‐Profit Law

Robert Hayhoe will be presenting on “Ethical Issues for Lawyers Sitting on Charitable or Not-for-Profit Boards” at the 2017 OBA Institute.

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Susan Manwaring speaks on donor issues at CAGP course

Susan Manwaring presents “Emerging Donor Issues” at the Advanced Canadian Gift Planning Course for the Canadian Association of Gift Planners (CAGP).

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Andrew Valentine speaks on legal developments in gift planning

Andrew Valentine speaks on “Recent Legal Developments in Gift Planning” at the Canadian Association of Gift Planners’ National Conference.

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Susan Manwaring speaks on alternative financing for charities

Her presentation is for the Canadian Council of Christian Charities 2016 conference.

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Susan Manwaring speaks on social impact bonds

Susan Manwaring co-presents with Grant Monck at the CAGP National Conference on “Social Impact Bonds: A Creative Tool for Advisors, Charities and Government”.

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Susan Manwaring and Martin Rochwerg speak on estate and tax planning

The 2016 Guide to Complex Issues in Estate and Tax Planning is presented by Osgoode Professional Development. Susan Manwaring speaks on “Charitable Donations: What You Need to Know”. Martin Rochwerg is Program Co-Chair.

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Susan Manwaring speaks on social enterprise

Susan Manwaring presents “Social Enterprise: Rethinking Your Organizational Structure” at the CPA Not-for-Profit Financial Executive Forum.

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Susan Manwaring lectures on risk management

Susan Manwaring is an instructor for Imagine Canada’s Standards Program Coach Certificate Course in collaboration with Carleton University.

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Andrew Valentine speaks on charity law

Andrew Valentine is a speaker at the Ontario Bar Association’s Institute 2016 program on “Current Need-to-Know Topics in Charity Law”.

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Recent Developments for Charities and Not-for-Profits

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group invites you to a complimentary seminar on recent developments and legal updates in the voluntary sector where we will discuss: Federal Update – What’s New? Rules for Directors of Societies and Co-operatives BC Budget –...

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Charity Advocacy and the Canada Revenue Agency. Where Are We Now?

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group invites you to its next breakfast seminar at our Montréal office. Topic discussed: The Canada Revenue Agency invited a group experts to make recommendations on changes that could be implemented to the rules that apply to activities...

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Where’s Grandma’s Monet? Advising the Older Donor

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group invites you to its next breakfast seminar at our Montréal office. Come learn more and exchange on ethical and legal issues with vulnerable donors. Topic discussed: The decision of the Supreme Court of Canada in the...

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( Available in French only )

Ce que les OBNL doivent savoir sur les taxes foncières et les exemptions

Le groupe Impact social de Miller Thomson vous invite à son deuxième déjeuner-conférence d’une série de quatre. Date : Jeudi 4 mai 2017 Horaire : 8 h à 9 h Réservation obligatoire par courriel : etardif@millerthomson.com L’appellation « Organisme à but non lucratif » (« OBNL ») n’est pas...

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Cybersecurity: Trends and Advice for Charities and Not-for-Profit

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group launches its series of breakfast seminars specifically targeting charities, non-profit organizations and social enterprises. Join us for the first breakfast on cybersecurity. **Please note this seminar will be delivered in French. Date: Wednesday, April 5,...

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The New Societies Act in British Columbia: What You Need to Know

On November 28, 2016, the new British Columbia Societies Act comes into force. Our Social Impact Group presents a complimentary seminar where we discuss what you need to know about the new Act, highlight some of the significant changes, and ensure...

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New Corporate Structures for Achieving Social Impact

Susan Manwaring speaks on “New Corporate Structures for Achieving Social Impact” at the 2013 Social Enterprise World Forum in Calgary.

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Charities Law Update

Miller Thomson hosts a breakfast seminar covering: Canada’s new anti-spam legislation New CRA rules on political activities for registered charities Update on CRA’s Non-Profit Organization Risk Identification Project BC’s Community Contribution Company legislation – in force July 29, 2013 Location...

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Charities & Not-For-Profit Update

Miller Thomson hosts a breakfast seminar outlining updates in the Charities and Not-for-Profit sector.

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Review of the Budget 2011 Proposals

The Miller Thomson Charities Group hosts a breakfast seminar reviewing Budget 2011 proposals. This is a repeat of our June 9, 2011 seminar.

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Co-operatives as Charities and Not-for-profits

Co-operatives are legal entities owned and run by, and for, their members.  There are over 9,000 co-operatives in Canada, with over 18 million members. Most of them operate businesses. Not all of them are business enterprises – many co-operatives are...

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Corporate Checklist: How to Hold an Annual Meeting

Each year, non-share capital corporations incorporated under the Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (Canada) (the “Act”) must either hold an annual membership meeting or, if the membership is small, pass resolutions signed by all voting members in lieu of holding a...

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What’s Happening

Mary Childs presented at the BOSS conference, Vancouver’s annual conference for leaders in the not-for-profit sector; co-presented a workshop on “Navigating the world of risk and insurance:  not-for-profit edition” on September 28, 2018. Mary Childs will be speaking on the...

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Special Announcement: Social Impact Group Ranked Band 1 in Chambers for Second Year in a Row!

Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Group is proud to announce that it has received Band 1 (highest) ranking in the 2019 Chambers Canada Guide for the second year in a row in the area of Charities/Non-profits.  This is the second year that Chambers has released...

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Saskatchewan’s The Informal Public Appeals Act: the Humboldt Broncos Case Study

The Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench has ordered money to be distributed from the Humboldt Broncos Memorial Fund Inc. to the victims and families impacted by the shocking bus crash in which 16 members of the team were killed and...

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Registered Charity T3010 Mailing Address Change

To meet their obligations under the Income Tax Act (Canada), all registered charities must file a Registered Charity Information Return (T3010) on an annual basis within six months of their financial year end. Canada Revenue Agency has issued an update...

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What’s Happening?

David Tang and Andrew Valentine attended the ABA Annual Meeting.  David moderated and spoke at a Continuing Legal Education Program panel co-sponsored by the Non profit Organizations Committee and the Cyberspace Committee entitled:  “Board Transitions – Voluntary and Otherwise” in Austin, Texas on...

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News Alert – Finance Releases Proposed Legislative Changes to Political Activities Rules

On Sept 14, 2018, the Department of Finance released draft legislation proposing amendments to the provisions in the Income Tax Act (Canada) (the “Act”) that deal with political activities by registered charities and registered Canadian amateur athletic associations (“RCAAAs”).  This draft legislation,...

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What’s Happening?

The Social Impact Group is pleased to sponsor Imagine Canada’s 2018 Sector Champion Roundtable in Halifax from August 22-24, 2018 where Susan Manwaring will be in attendance.

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Canada without Poverty Decision Appealed and Federal Government announces changes to the Political Activities Rules in the Income Tax Act

Readers will recall seeing our summary of the recent decision of Justice Morgan in Canada Without Poverty v. AG Canada  –  a Charter decision in which Canada Without Poverty (“CWP”) argued that the provisions of the Income Tax Act (Canada)(“ITA”)...

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Christian Horizons and Menno Homes amalgamate

Counsel to Christian Horizons

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Social Impact Newsletter

Read the latest issue of Miller Thomson’s Social Impact Newsletter

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Pioneering pay-for-success in Canada: A new way to pay for social progress

Learn more about social impact bonds in this guide published by MaRS Discovery District

Download (pdf)