logo: ONCA Update

ONCA – Overview

What FOCA sees: After more than a decade, ONCA was finally proclaimed on October 19, 2021. If your association is incorporated in Ontario, you have 3 years to transition to the new rules (=October 2024). It is time to review or update your bylaws, in order to comply with ONCA.

NOTE: ONCA is the Ontario Not-for-Profit Corporations Act, 2010, and it applies to all organizations incorporated in Ontario (including incorporated lake associations). For more on the differences between provincially-, federally-incorporated and non-incorporated organizations, see resources on FOCA’s Lake Association Toolkit webpage.

Recent News & Updates:

November 2022 – Nonprofit Law Ontario has created a new webpage with information about how to change bylaws, which is a step that some of our incorporated Associations will need to make prior to October 18, 2024 to comply with ONCA.

June 22, 2022 – Not sure what to do about ONCA? FOCA has been preparing our member Associations for this moment for many years. Start by watching this quick overview video from CLEO: Managing the Transition to ONCA (5 minute video; posted to YouTube) Also visit: https://nonprofitlaw.cleo.on.ca/future-law/ for the steps to take to determine whether ONCA applies to your organization/association, and what you need to do next to be in compliance. Nonprofit Law Ontario has posted a concise overview and a “Bylaw Builder” tool. If you already have a set of bylaws, you’re more likely to use their information about How to adjust existing bylaws. If your “Articles” (previously sometimes referred to as Letters Patent) are no longer reflective of the current goals and activities of the organization, you need to update and file them on paper, or using the new online Ontario Business Registry.

For more, review the FOCA member webinar about ONCA:

April 2022 – Is your association incorporated in Ontario? Then FOCA’s 1hr45min webinar with Community Legal Education Ontario about the transition to the Ontario Not-for-profit Corporations Act (ONCA) is essential viewing! Members can review the recording, slides, and related documents:

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Earlier News:

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August 17, 2021 – The Ontario Not-for-Profit Corporations Act (ONCA) will be proclaimed on October 19, 2021. Nonprofits will have three years after the proclamation to transition to the new rules.

Regulations that were needed prior to the proclamation of ONCA have now been published:


*Note: The Province has posted Rules for not-for-profit and charitable corporations

May 2021 – FOCA members are advised that the Ontario government has confirmed that corporations governed by the Corporations Act (Ontario) can continue to hold meetings virtually until December 31, 2021, despite any provisions in their letters patent or by-laws to the contrary. See more information here: https://www.ontario.ca/page/covid-19-changes-meetings-and-business-operations. The Ontario Not for Profit Corporations Act (ONCA) (not yet in force) will have the same provisions, should it be proclaimed this year.

October 2020 – Important members’ update about ONCA:

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September 21, 2020 – The Ontario Minister of Government and Consumer Services today passed an “extension motion” to extend the deadline to proclaim the ONCA into force until December 31, 2021 (BLG)

March 2020 – Nonprofit Law Ontario reported recently that the target for ONCA to come into force “is no longer early 2020, but we do not know when ONCA will take effect. Most organizations should not make changes to comply with the ONCA yet, as certain rules have not been published.” Visit https://nonprofitlaw.cleo.on.ca/ for more information.

July 2019 – FOCA members can access this Update, once Logged in:

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Update March 2018 – FOCA has posted a webpage with updates about the status of ONCA; FOCA members can access it here: https://foca.on.ca/onca-highlights-members-only/

Update 2017 – ONCA has been introduced to the Ontario Legislature as a Bill, but has not yet been proclaimed (@ 2017). Changes are coming under ONCA, that will affect all FOCA member Associations incorporated in Ontario.

Once the Bill is passed,  according to the Ontario Nonprofit Network, “it will be two more years before the ONCA is proclaimed into law, and organizations have a further three year implementation period to become compliant with the new requirements. After that, they are deemed to comply (meaning ONCA provisions will override noncompliant by-laws).”

Update – November 2017 – from Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO):

New legislation proclaimed – On November 1st, 2017, the Ontario government passed Bill 154, the Cutting Unnecessary Red Tape Act, 2017. {Note: The Act received Royal Assent on November 14, 2017 and is now in effect.} It includes some important improvements to the ONCA that the ONN, charity law lawyers and nonprofit organizations have been asking for. “Collaboration in action!” reports CLEO.

Please note: The following update is intended to give you an overview of the new legislation and how it may likely impact nonprofit organizations. Please consult your legal advisor and the Act in more detail to determine how your organization will be impacted by these provisions.

icon: magnifying glassRead background, and details about changes coming under ONCA that may affect FOCA member associations – including proxies, membership classes and timing for distribution of financial statementsONCA Highlights @ Sept.2017 (Members-only post)

Michelle LewinONCA – Overview