Here is a CRA note on what is a qualified donee. If you are involved with governance or management of a charity it is important to understand what is a qualified donee because registered charities can make gifts to qualified donees but registered charities cannot make gifts to “non-qualified donees”. If a registered charity makes a gift to a non-qualified donee it could faces penalties and revocation. After the CRA guidance below I have placed a link to some helpful resources that relate to qualified donees that are working with groups that are not qualified donees in both Canada and also abroad.

Qualified Donees Guidance
Reference Number

August 15, 2011

The guidance replaces Summay Policy CSP-Q01, Qualified Donee.

Under the Income Tax Act, qualified donees are organizations that can issue official donation receipts for gifts that individuals and corporations make to them.

Qualified donees
Qualified donees are as follows:

  • a registered charity (including a registered national arts service organization);
  • a registered Canadian amateur athletic association;
  • a housing corporation resident in Canada constituted exclusively to provide low-cost housing for the aged;
  • a Canadian municipality;
  • the United Nations and its agencies;
  • a university that is outside Canada that is prescribed to be a university, the student body of which ordinarily includes students from Canada;
  • a charitable organization outside Canada to which Her Majesty in right of Canada has made a gift during the fiscal period or in the 12 months immediately preceding the period; and
  • Her Majesty in right of Canada or a province.

Proposed changes to the Income Tax Act, being administered by the Canada Revenue Agency, expand qualified donees to include a municipal or public body performing a function of government in Canada.


  • Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985 (5th supp.) c. 1, para. 110.1(1)(), ss. 118.1(1) and 149.1(1) and 149.1(6.4).
  • Disbursement of Funds to a Qualified Donee, CPC-014.
  • Gifts to Certain Charitable Organizations Outside Canada, IC84-3R6.
  • Registered Charities Newsletter, Issue No. 24.
  • Donations to Prescribed Universities Outside Canada, RC191.


For more resources on this topic see a page on

CRA’s new Guidance on foreign activities by Canadian charities