Effective December 31, 2013, the Manitoba Legislature has repealed The Charities Endorsement Act. This change reduces the regulatory burden on charities engaged in fundraising activities in Manitoba.
The Charities Endorsement Act had previously provided that no person or organization could solicit donations for a charitable purpose unless they were authorized by the Manitoba government. This required most charities fundraising in Manitoba to register with the Manitoba government (subject to certain exemptions). It was also necessary to file copies of any agreements with promotional agencies conducting fundraising on a charity’s behalf. With the repeal of the Act, provincial registration in Manitoba will no longer be required.
It is important to remember that fundraising activities are still subject to provincial regulation in three provinces. In Alberta, the Charitable Fund-raising Act requires registration by charities and fundraising businesses engaged in solicitations in Alberta. The Charitable Fund-raising Businesses Act of Saskatchewan imposes a registration requirement on fundraising businesses that solicit funds on behalf of charities. The Charities Act of Prince Edward Island also has a registration regime, but exempts charities that are registered under the Income Tax Act.
Charities with questions about their provincial fundraising requirements can contact a lawyer in Miller Thomson’s Charities and Not-for-Profit Group for advice.