The Private Member’s Bill proposing to extend the annual deadline for charitable donations has passed second reading in the House of Commons.

Private Member’s Bill C-458 was introduced by Peter Braid, Member of Parliament for Kitchener-Waterloo, and proposes to amend the Income Tax Act to provide that individuals may claim charitable donation credits for gifts made in the year and in the first 60 days of the following year. This would cause the deadline for charitable gifts to match the deadline for RRSP contributions. The Bill was introduced in October 2012.

Bill C-458 received unanimous approval on second reading and will now be reviewed by the Parliamentary Finance Committee, which will receive input from stakeholders.

MP Braid’s website comments as follows:

Mr. Braid’s Private Member’s Bill aims to enhance support for charities by raising awareness of the tax benefits of charitable donations, and encourage people to consider giving as part of their tax and financial planning. It would also move decisions on charitable giving away from the hectic holiday season, and create a second season of giving, which would be further underscored with National Charities Week at the end of February.

We will keep our readers updated as this Bill progresses. The hope is that, if this Bill is ultimately passed into law, it has the effect as intended of increasing donations to the charitable sector. Those in the sector that wish to contribute to the Finance Committee’s review of the Bill may wish to consider submitting a brief to the Committee during the review process.