Do I need to register a non-profit corporation before applying for charitable status with the CRA?

Yes, in order to apply for charitable status with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), you need to have a legal entity in place, such as a non-profit corporation. The CRA requires that an organization be constituted as a corporation or a trust before it can be registered as a charity.

To apply for charitable status, you will need to submit an application to the Charities Directorate of the CRA, which includes detailed information about your organization, its objectives, and its activities. The CRA will review your application to determine whether your organization meets the requirements for charitable status, including the advancement of charitable purposes, the prohibition of any non-charitable activities, and compliance with other legal and regulatory requirements.

It is important to note that while registering as a non-profit corporation is a necessary step towards obtaining charitable status, it does not automatically confer charitable status. You will need to apply for charitable status separately with the CRA and meet their requirements to be granted this status. If you have any questions, you may contact our charity lawyers at or 1-877-892-7778.

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