Next year there will be slightly revised fees for certain services relating to the Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act (“CNCA”) ie. the Federal non-profit corporate act.  These changes will come into effect on January 15, 2020.    I will discuss the mundane details and also some very exciting news.

For most CNCA corporation the biggest difference is that the annual filing fee for the annual return will be reduced from $20 to $12.   If you don’t file online it will go up to $40.

There is a priority service which charges $100.  This is a small amount of money to pay if priority is important.  But here is the interesting thing – the typical turnaround for filing corporate documents such as articles of incorporation, continuance etc. is half a day to one day!  So probably most people will not be needing the expedited services especially when some provincial regulators are taking 4-6 months to process documents!

There will also be no fees for certain articles of amendment – namely articles of amendment relating to changing the province in which the registered office is located or to change the number of directors or range of directors.  This will encourage groups to keep that information up to date.

But the big news is that you will be able to access corporate documents for CNCA corporations for FREE.   This is amazing.  Today you are charged $1 per page.  For a typical corporation that means say $4 for articles of incorporation and $20 for by-laws etc.   If the corporation has been around under the CNCA since 2011 you might pay about $40 or $50 for the corporate documents depending on the number of pages involved.   Now these will be all free.  Great for the public especially volunteers at npos and charities, journalists, researchers, lawyers, etc.  The current charges are an impediment – both cost and time of having to do a financial transaction.  Many people involved with charities, whether they be staff or directors, don’t even have updated copies of corporate documents – now that they will be freely available it is more likely that the people will have access to them.

You can read the details of the regulatory changes, the regulatory impact analysis statement, a benefits and cost discussion as well as the service standard relating to CNCA transactions at the Canada Gazette.

So some very positive news with the CNCA.    A reminder that for many organizations who are established provincially there may be lots of benefits to continuing/moving from provincial to Federal corporate law.   Here is an article focus on why Ontario corporations under the Ontario Corporations Act should consider moving to Federal rather than waiting for the ONCA to come into force next year.