All BC societies should complete a bare minimum transition by November 28, 2018 or risk being struck from the register.
Why incorporate as a society? What are the reasons for doing so, and why not stay an unincorporated association?
I’m asked a lot about the “previously unalterable” provisions: those sections of a society’s constitution which must be moved into the bylaws and may be altered by a special resolution of the membership after the society transitions. But some societies are not at liberty to change these, at least not without ministerial permission. Others may put their funding or charitable status at risk if they modernize their bylaws.
BC Registries has provided additional guidance for non-BC societies who may be registered in BC. Such extraprovincial non-share corporations must “on-board” to the new electronic registries system to avoid being struck by the Registrar, but do not need to transition. They must also register within 60 days of beginning to carry on activities in B.C. and appoint a qualified attorney if its head office is not in B.C.
At a presentation in Vancouver in early July, staff from the BC Registries provided some additional information on the transition process meant to assist those without legal representation to transition their societies. The talk primarily dealt with the new online registries system, as well as an “onboarding” process which will take place in October 2016.
Limited clarity on how the transition process under the Societies Act will affect those organizations with community gaming grant funding has been provided by the BC Corporate Registry in an FAQ posted to its website.
The BC Corporate Registry has posted information on its transition package service, a $40 service which includes certified copies of a society’s original constitution, bylaws, and any filed special resolution amending the constitution and bylaws.
If your society has an occupational title as one of its assets, watch out: a misstep under the new Society Act (BC) (the “New Act”) could remove your title protection.
If you are transitioning a society on your own, the process is quite simple. This post details the barebones process for transition of a non-member-funded society.
On transition, a pre-exiting society which qualifies may become a “member funded society”, a special type of society which is not subject to the reporting, disclosure, and winding up requirements of a typical society. Many societies, particularly closely-held societies, will want this status. It is obtained by adding a statement to the society’s constitution at the time of filing a transition application with the BC Corporate Registry. But if that deadline is missed, an application to the court is necessary. The particular phrasing of the section is unclear, as is…