The COVID-19 crisis is affecting charities in numerous ways. In this short note, we will discuss cancelling events and refunding money or attempting to turn that into a potential charitable donation. We have received a number of inquiries from clients about how to do this and here are some tentative thoughts.
While donors to fraudulent donation schemes may not be morally innocent, their culpability does not reach the level of the promoters of these schemes. It is refreshing to see the CRA prosecuting those responsible, rather than merely reassessing and penalizing taxpayers.
This case is a reminder that charities need to be mindful of the rules when they issue donation receipts. Donors rely on the receipts in order to claim tax credits/deductions. If the Minister denies a donor’s claim for a tax credit/deduction on the basis that the charity did not include all of the required information, this will reflect poorly on the charity and could harm its relationships with donors.