Starting a Foundation in Canada

Starting a foundation in Canada requires extensive planning and a significant investment of time and resources. If you are interested in setting up a foundation to help fulfill your philanthropic goals, you should consider speaking with a financial advisory firm or law firm that specializes in the formation of private and public foundations.

Choosing a Name

When selecting a name for your foundation how to start a foundation in canada, it is important to provide a unique name that is not already in use by another organization. The name must be registered with the province in which you are incorporated or in which you will operate. Once the name is registered, a search will be conducted against other organizations in Canada to ensure that your chosen name is not too similar or confusing.

Choosing Board Members

One of the most important decisions in starting a foundation is choosing a board of directors that you trust to manage the assets of your organization. It is not enough to simply select people that you know and trust – it is critical that the individuals you choose have professional experience in managing the assets of high-net-worth clients.

Creating Your Foundation Articles of Incorporation

Once you have determined the legal form of your foundation, you can begin the process of incorporating it. This will involve drafting your articles of incorporation and compiling the required information for your nonprofit. These documents will include the name and address of your nonprofit, the names and addresses of your board members, and other information that is relevant to the establishment of your organization.

In addition to preparing the Articles of Incorporation, you will also need to prepare a business plan for your nonprofit. This is a document that will detail how you intend to operate your nonprofit, including the costs involved.

Establishing a Foundation in Canada

Once your legal document has been drafted and signed by the trustees or directors of your foundation, you can begin the process to register it with the CRA as a charitable foundation. During this process, you will be required to submit an application for registration to CRA along with a copy of your governing document.

The Charities Directorate at CRA will review the application and decide if it will be considered a charitable foundation, public foundation or private foundation. In making this decision, CRA will take into account the foundation’s purpose and activities, the relationship between the trustees or directors, and other factors.

Getting Funding For Your Foundation

Once you have your foundation incorporated and have received charitable status from CRA, it is important to begin evaluating the grants, donations and other contributions that are coming in to the foundation. This will help you determine whether or not your foundation is doing its job well and whether or not it should continue to grow and expand.

Investing in Your Foundation

Once the Foundation has been established, it is important to invest in your foundation and manage its assets in accordance with your philanthropic goals. It is important to hire a foundation asset manager that will work in concert with the goals and values of your foundation.