Submitting the Forms


Submitting the forms

The T3010-1 Annual Information Return contains several forms and documents in addition to Form T3010-1. As well as the three forms featured in the Charity Filing Guide, you need to submit the Basic Information Sheet and your financial statements to CRA, along with other forms that may apply to your charity. The information on this page helps you pull together a complete return package.

Links to information on this page

Points to keep in mind
Deadlines and reminders
Completing the basic information sheet
Attaching financial statements
What do I submit to CRA?
How do I assemble a complete T3010-1 return package?
See other pages in the Charity Filing Guide
Links to the CRA website

Points to keep in mind

  • The deadline is no later than 6 months after your fiscal year-end.
  • Check that the pre-printed information on the Basic Information Sheet is correct.
  • If you want to change the name of your charity, your charity's designation, or your fiscal period end, you must apply in writing to CRA and provide documentation. You cannot change these items on the Basic Information Sheet.
  • Use the checklists in Form T3010-1 and on the CRA website to ensure that you submit all required forms and attachments with your T3010-1 information return.
  • CRA does not require audited financial statements.
  • The treasurer should review and sign financial statements that weren't prepared by an accounting professional.
  • Provincial or municipal governments and granting agencies may have additional requirements.

Deadlines and reminders

Deadlines

The deadline for submitting the T3010-1 Information Return is no later than 6 months after your fiscal year-end.

For example,

  • If your fiscal year-end is December 30, 2009, the deadline is June 30, 2010.
  • If your fiscal year-end is March 31, 2010, the deadline is September 30, 2010.

You can meet the deadline by sending a package postmarked on the last day, but in case there are issues with the return, it’s better to submit it before the deadline. CRA does not grant extensions.

Reminders

Timeline CRA reminders and action steps

1 month before fiscal year-end

CRA send the T3010-1 Information Return package to the address they have on file. Call them if you don't receive it before your fiscal year-end. You can't download all the forms from the Internet. You need CRA to print a Basic Information Sheet for your charity.

5 months after fiscal year-end, or
1 month before the deadline

CRA sends a letter reminding you to file before the deadline. If you already submitted the return, call CRA to be sure they received it.

7 months after fiscal year-end, or
1 month after the deadline

CRA sends a letter to notify you that your filing is late. You missed the deadline. Call CRA to discuss the situation.

8 months after fiscal year-end, or
2 months after the deadline

CRA attempts to get in touch with the contact person on record for your charity.

10 months after fiscal year-end, or
4 months after the deadline

CRA begins the revocation process if they haven't been able to contact someone from your charity. Revocation is serious and public. The names of revoked charities are posted on the CRA website. If you lose your registered status, you must apply again from the beginning. There is no fast track, and re-registration is not automatic.

Completing the Basic Information Sheet

The Registered Charity Basic Information Sheet (BIS) is the page with the sticky labels on it that comes with your T3010-1. Don’t throw it out after removing the labels. The BIS must be returned to CRA as part of a complete T3010-1 Information Return. The BIS has two sides: the front has the sticky labels; the back has pre-printed information. Double check the pre-printed information to be sure it is accurate. The person who signs Form T3010-1 also verifies that the information on the BIS is correct and up to date. CRA provides boxes so that you can change some of the information on the BIS. Other information can only be changed by writing a request letter to CRA under separate cover and providing documentation.

For detailed instructions on how to complete the BIS, see Guide T4033-1.

This information can be changed on the BIS

Mailing address
Telephone number
Fax number
Email address
Website address
Public contact name or position

Contact information should be correct and current. It appears in the online CRA Charities Listings. CRA encourages donors to use the listings to research charities they might want to donate to. Be sure potential donors can reach you.

Names the charity is known by other than its registered name

Many charities are known by a short form of their full legal name, or by the name of a popular fundraising campaign.

Program areas

Use the boxes to enter new program areas, or to change the order of the three pre-printed program areas.

  • Contact CRA before you start new programs. They need to verify that the programs qualify as charitable and that they fit your charity's objectives.
  • Field codes are listed in Guide T4033-1.
  • Rank the three primary program areas based on the percentage of time and resources devoted to each area. Don’t try to be perfect; a good approximation is fine.

This information may be changed by sending a request to CRA

You cannot change your charity's name, designation, or fiscal period end on the BIS. You must send CRA a letter, separately, that outlines your request, with appropriate documentation attached. Don't attach this type of request to the BIS, it might delay processing. Call CRA for further information.

Name of your charity

Send CRA an official copy of the relevant amendment to your governing documents along with a letter explaining the name change.

Designation

There are three designations: charitable organization, public foundation, or private foundation. To change your designation, complete Form T2095, Registered Charities: Application for Re-Designation available on the CRA website.

Fiscal period end

You must obtain CRA's permission before you change the month and day of your fiscal year end because it affects your obligations under the Income Tax Act. Send CRA a letter stating the new fiscal period, the reason for the change, the effective date, and have the letter signed by someone who has authority to sign for your charity.

Note: changing the fiscal year end may mean that you have to submit more than one information return in a calendar year: one for the transition period, one for the new fiscal year end. See Guide T4033-1 for more information

This information cannot be changed

Registration date

You can’t change your registration date. However, if your registration was revoked and you successfully applied for re-registration, the registration date will be the date of re-registration, not your charity's original registration date.

BN/registration number

Verify this number against your records.

Attaching financial statements

You must include a copy of your charity's financial statements when you submit the T3010-1 Information Return. Attach any notes to the financial statements or appendixes as well. Your financial statements are not posted online in the CRA Charities Listings, but they are available to members of the public upon request to CRA. Be sure you remove any confidential information, such as bank account numbers, from the copy you submit to CRA.

CRA doesn’t specify the format of your financial statements. The statements should clearly show all sources of revenue and how the money was spent. Generally, financial statements include a statement of income and expenses (also called an income statement, statement of operations, or profit and loss statement) and a statement of assets and liabilities (also called a balance sheet or statement of financial position).

You don't need to submit audited financial statements to CRA. CRA recommends that you file audited statements if your charity's gross income is more than $250,000, but it is not mandatory. Your Treasurer should sign financial statements that were not prepared by an auditor.

Provincial or municipal governments and granting agencies do not follow the same reporting format as CRA. You may need to have audited statements prepared to meet their reporting requirements. Read their documentation carefully.

What do I submit to CRA?

The T3010-1 Information Return Package includes the completed T3010-1, your charity's financial statements, and any other forms that apply to your charity. Information in this section is taken from Filing the T3010-1 Information Return on the CRA website: www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/rtrn/flngb-eng.html

Forms and documents that should be filed with the information return

All registered charities

  • Form T3010-1 Registered Charity Information Return
  • Registered Charity Basic Information sheet (with or without corrections)
  • A copy of the registered charity's financial statements
  • The signature of a director, trustee, or like official of the charity in the certification area of the return (Form T3010-1, Section E)
  • Form T1235 Directors/Trustees and Like Officials Worksheet
  • Form T1236 Qualified Donees Worksheet/Amounts Provided to Other Organizations (if applicable)

Private Foundations

  • Form T2081 Excess Corporate Holdings Worksheet for Private Foundations (Private Foundations only)

Registered charities subject to the Ontario Corporations Act

  • Form RC232-WS Director/Officer Worksheet and Ontario Corporations Information Act Annual Return, or Form RC232, Ontario Corporations Information Act Annual Return (If you are eligible to file Form RC232-WS you do not need to file Form T1235(09).)

If the charity is no longer in operation, attach a letter signed by an authorized representative asking CRA to revoke your charity's registration. Voluntary revocation is better for your charity’s image, and finances, than ceasing to file and having your registration revoked by CRA, with the possibility of penalties and sanctions.

Do not file these forms and documents with the information return

  • Copies of official donation receipts.
  • Requests for changes to contact person, phone numbers, and mailing address, unless the changes are indicated on the Basic Information Sheet (BIS).
  • Governing documents. If your charity changed its governing documents during the fiscal period, send an official copy of the amended governing documents to CRA. Mail the documents in a separate envelope from the return to avoid processing delays.

How do I assemble a complete T3010-1 return package?

This list gives you an idea of the big steps involved in pulling together a complete T3010-1 package. These steps may or may not apply to your charity. Use this list as a guideline to develop your own checklist to ensure that you have everything you need to submit a complete information return.

Complete the forms

  • Use the checklist in Form T3010-1 to ensure that all relevant sections and schedules have been completed.
  • Use the lists in on this page to ensure that all required forms are attached.

Check the forms

  • Check the math.
  • Check to be sure that all required lines have been completed.
  • Compare each form to last year's form.
  • Compare key amounts to your financial statements, for example, total assets and total liabilities.

Review the forms

  • The board of directors/trustees should review the forms.
  • The Treasurer should review and sign the statements if an auditor did not prepare them.
  • A member of your board of directors/trustees who has authority to sign for your charity must sign the T3010-1.

Assemble the package

  • Gather all forms and attachments into a complete T3010-1 information return package. (See What do I submit to CRA? on this page.)
  • Copy everything for your records.
  • Date the copy and file it with previous year's information returns.
  • Add notes to your file copy to record areas of concern or to provide background information. For example, if you had to split or combine accounts to complete one of the line items, note what you did beside that line to refresh your memory next year.

Submit the return

  • Send the information return package to Charities Directorate, Canada Revenue Agency, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0L5. Do not send the return to your local tax services office.
  • If you want a receipt, send the package by registered mail, Xpresspost™, or courier.
  • Note the date you mailed the return package in your calendar. If you sent the package by registered mail, Xpresspost™, or courier, file the receipt with the file copy of the return.

See other pages in the Charity Filing Guide

See Keeping on Track for tips on how to make filing easier next year

Links to the CRA website

Charities Directorate website
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/charities/

Guide T4033-1 Completing the Registered Charity Information Return
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/tg/T4033-1/README.html

The CRA Charities Listings
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/lstngs/menu-eng.html

Registered Charity Basic Information sheet
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/rtrn/nfsht-eng.html

Filing the T3010-1 information return
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/rtrn/flngb-eng.html

Checklist: Filing the annual information return (Form T3010-1)
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/chcklsts/T3010-1-eng.html

Consequences of non-filing
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/rtrn/cnsqncs-eng.html

Form T2095 Registered Charities: Application for Re-Designation
http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/chrts-gvng/chrts/prtng/rqsts/rdsgntn-eng.html