CRA revokes the registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc. for involvement w/ tax shelter

January 12, 2013 | By: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) Mark Blumberg
Topics: Canadian Charity Law

The Charities Directorate of the Canada Revenue Agency has announced the revocation of the charitable registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc..

Here is a CRA press release:

“The Canada Revenue Agency revokes the registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc.
Ottawa, Ontario, January 11, 2013… The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will revoke the registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc., a Saskatoon-based charity. The notice of revocation will be published in the Canada Gazette with an effective date of January 12, 2013.

On November 19, 2012, and in accordance with subsection 168(1) of the Income Tax Act, the CRA issued a notice of intention to revoke the registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc. The letter stated, in part, that:

“The Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) audit revealed that the Organization failed to devote its resources exclusively to its own charitable activities by participating in the Universal Barter Group, a registered tax shelter. Our audit indicated that, for the period from January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2008, the Organization issued $1.1 million in donation receipts for transactions that do not qualify as gifts and did so at the direction of the tax shelter promoter. Our audit also revealed that the Organization failed to maintain or provide adequate books and records as required by section 230 of the Act to demonstrate that the pharmaceuticals it purportedly acquired were distributed under the direction of the Organization.”

A copy of the notice of intention to revoke and other letters relating to the grounds for revocation are available to the public on request, in the language they were originally written, by calling 1?800?267?2384.

An organization that has had its registration as a charity revoked can no longer issue donation receipts for income tax purposes and is no longer a qualified donee under the Income Tax Act. The organization is no longer exempt from income tax, unless it qualifies as a non-profit organization, and it may be subject to a tax equal to the full value of its remaining assets.

Registered charities perform valuable work in our communities, and Canadians support this work in many ways. The CRA regulates these organizations through the Income Tax Act and is committed to ensuring that they operate in compliance with the law. When a registered charity is found not to comply with its legal obligations, the CRA may revoke its registration under the Income Tax Act.

The CRA is reviewing all tax shelter-related donation arrangements (for example, schemes that typically promise donors a tax receipt worth more than the actual amount of the donation), and it plans to audit every participating charity, promoter, and investor. For more information about tax shelters, go to the CRA’s Tax alert Web page at http://www.cra.gc.ca/alert.

For more information about the registration of Canadian charities, go to the CRA’s Charities and Giving Web page at http://www.cra.gc.ca/charities.

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For Broadcast Use:

The Canada Revenue Agency has announced that it will revoke the registration of International Fellowship Mission Inc., a Saskatoon-based charity. The revocation will come into effect on January 12, 2013.

Media Enquiries:

Noël Carisse
Media Relations
Canada Revenue Agency
(613) 952-9184”

Here is the actual press release: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/nwsrm/rlss/2013/m01/nr130111b-eng.html

Here is a copy of the CRA letters to International Fellowship Mission Inc.

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Charity Lawyer Mark Blumberg

Mark Blumberg is a partner at the law firm of Blumberg Segal LLP in Toronto and works almost exclusively in the areas of non-profit and charity law.

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