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Donation Policy

1. BASIC PRINCIPLES

Suicide Action Montréal (SAM) takes on the responsibility of issuing official receipts for income tax purposes in accordance with provincial and federal laws. SAM’s official charity organisation number is 88054 4275 RR0001.

In accordance with this policy and laws in effect, all contributions is received by Suicide Action Montreal (‘‘SAM”), who cashes in these donations and issues receipts to the contributors. Moreover, SAM keeps an official registry of all collected contributions. 

It is important that SAM and their respective board of directors, officially adopts this policy in order to ensure that all contributors are dealt with equally and equitably. These procedures ensure that any contributor making a donation is treated fairly and receives the refund to which he/she is entitled, according to the applicable laws and the type of contribution made. 

The Policy on acceptance and use of contributions has been put in place to: (i) manage all donations made to SAM, whichever the type of the donation, and (ii) to properly manage all donations received, in the best interest of SAM its operations and special projects. 

The donations aim at helping SAM financially, so the organization can fulfill its mission to prevent suicide, its numerous related services as well as financially help the organization’s continuing training programs developed for its volunteers and workers.

The policies must enable the organization to:

  • • Make enlightened decisions regarding the acceptance of donations;
  • • Deal with the contributions in accordance with income tax laws;
  • • Develop administrative, legal and accounting methods regarding the acceptance, processing and recognition of donations;
  • • Accurately report all donations made to SAM;
  • • Inform the contributors on the use of their donations;
  • • Maintain an equitable and coherent relationship with the donators;


When special events are held, sponsorships can be offered to SAM. In this case, these sponsorships will not be considered as a charitable donation according to the applicable laws. Therefore, no official charity receipt will be issued for income tax purposes.

2. ACCEPTING DONATIONS

2.1 Eligibility of donations
Material Donations are eligible in the form of:

  1. i) Cash or cheques;
  2. ii) Securities, shares and bonds;
  3. iii) Material donations, real estate properties;
  4. iv) Legacies;
  5. v) Insurance policies indicating SAM as the irrevocable beneficiary and, ultimately the beneficial owner;
  6. vi) Fiduciary agreements;
  7. vii) Life annuity agreements;


2.2 Conditional Donations
When donations are associated with conditions that are deemed challenging on an administrative point of view, (i.e. deemed as a hindrance to SAM’s freedom of operations or not considered to be in its best interest), SAM in consultation with its Boards of Directors, may recommend that the terms pertaining to these contributions be revised or that the contributions be refused if the terms cannot be modified. 

2.3 Acceptance of donations
SAM reserves the right to accept or refuse any contribution it receives. However, cashing all donations must be made through SAM, whatever the use may be. 

In accordance with the policy on recognition, the final decision regarding the acceptance or refusal to publicly mention a name when acknowledging a donation is up to SAM. Therefore, the acceptance of a donation which implicates a proposition to publicly mention a name when acknowledging a donation is conditional on the final acceptance from SAM. 

All donations made to SAM must generally be acknowledged, registered and filed by SAM. The first acknowledgement consists of an official charity receipt together with a letter prepared by SAM. These documents represent an official acceptance of the donation, according to the conditions discussed above. 

Contributions made in the form of stocks/securities will be cashed at the average market price on the day of the transaction/transfer. In accordance to the Fondation’s policy, the stocks will be sold at the earliest opportunity, or at a later time deemed appropriate by SAM. 

SAM is responsible for keeping legacies (intended donations) and SAM will be advised by its Management upon the reception of such donations, and vice-versa. 

SAM will also be advised upon receiving intended donations regarding insurance policies, life annuities and fiduciary agreements.

2.4 Receiving donations
All eligible donations, received by SAM, will be matched by an official tax receipt, unless a donator specifically requests otherwise. Consequently, according to the law, a charitable organization can only issue a charity tax receipt upon cashing in the corresponding donation. Therefore, for a donator to receive a tax receipt issued by SAM, a donation must be made to the organization. If a donation is made by cheque, the receipt will be issued once the amount is cashed in. 

Donations made through SAM help contribute in three specific ways:

  1. i) A complete and precise reporting of contributions made to SAM according to current laws;
    ii) Ensuring that a contributor’s donation made to SAM is acknowledged in its entirety;
    iii) Ensuring a better management of donations made to SAM;

It is therefore essential that SAM manages all donations.


Charity receipts are delivered for the year during which donations were received. If a donation was received after December 31, the post stamp will be considered as the valid date of the donation. Charity receipts are only made to the donators themselves. For a donation made through a credit card, the receipt will be made out to the card holder. As for donations made by cheques, a receipt will be issued to the person whose name appears on the cheque as the account holder.

In some cases, SAM may register funds that are not considered as charity donations. When this is the case, receipts cannot be issued and therefore, this policy doesn’t apply to these types of donations.


3. USE OF DONATIONS

SAM invests unused donations to yield a profit. SAM will transfer sufficient funds to ensure a proper functioning, whenever deemed timely by both organizations. SAM intends to put all its efforts to maintain general and administration expenses under 10% of its annual income. 

Once its financial year completed, SAM produces audited financial statements, which are presented to the Annual general meeting. For transparency purposes, any donator to SAM is entitled to receive an approved copy of the two previous years’ financial statements.

4. GENERAL POLICIES AND ADMINISTRATION 

In consultation with SAM's Management, SAM must ensure that all solicitation activities must be made according to SAM’s priorities and needs, and must correspond to the mission put in place for SAM. 

Each donation made requires a written confirmation from its donator. Committing to making a series of donations over a number of years require the drafting of a contract that must be signed by SAM’s Management. 

All negotiations or talks relating to donations in kind, including donations of a property, books, non-capital assets, IT material and works of art must be managed by SAM, since these items must be evaluated by a third party so a fair value can be established for tax receipt purposes. 

Capitalized donations must include a clause giving SAM the freedom the change the original conditions if these were to become non-applicable, so that the donation can be redirected to a prioritized program, while trying to preserve the donator’s initial intent.

Moreover, all capitalized donations received must be invested so that the start-up capital remains whole. By doing so, the interest will have to be sufficient to financially support an activity indicated by the donator and agreed upon the signature of the agreement. Ultimately, the growth of capital should compensate for the effects of inflation over the years. Funds must therefore be invested in a conservative and safe fashion in order to preserve a donator’s intent to establish a non-assignable endowment fund to ensure continuity. 

5. ACCOUNTING OF CONTRIBUTIONS 

Ensuring transparency, aiming at increasing donations as well as maintaining donators’ trust towards SAM is a priority. It is therefore essential to clearly establish the administrative methods and the criteria which serve as the basis of our accounting methods for contributions raised through SAM’s fundraising activities. 

All donations received by SAM during any given annual campaign are accounted for in SAN’s financial results. SAM’s financial year starts April 1st and ends March 31st. 

All donations received by SAM during the course of a special campaign are accounted for in the financial results related to this particular campaign. A campaign starts on the day of its offical launch and lasts until the event officially comes to an end. 

SAM’s Management is responsible for managing this policy, for updating the list of donations to be accounted for and for transmitting the relevant information to the accounting staff and to the person in charge of managing the donations information system.

This system allows all donations to be electronically filled according to the codes specific for each campaign. When a donation is made during a specific campaign but is paid in several instalments, the entire amount must be accounted for the campaign during which the donation was first made, as recommended by the CCAE and the CASE. However, when this type of donation is made, the income tax receipt will only be issued for the amount incurred during that specific year. 

5.1 Donations related to a specific campaign:

  1. i. Donations intended for a particular campaign; 
  2. ii. Subscriptions intended for a campaign and confirmed in writing; 
  3. iii. Donations confirmed as being received, excluding donations and sponsorships from previous campaigns; 
  4. iv. Considering the goals of the organization, non-restrictive legacies received during a major campaign can be credited for that particular campaign; 
  5. v. If the capital related to an insurance policy is made available during a campaign and there are no restrictions attached, it can then be credited for that particular campaign;
  6. vi. Non-restrictive irrevocable donations conditional to the purchase of a life annuity and intended for a campaign; 
  7. vii. Donations of land, cultural assets or other types of donations in kind, as described in the policy below, and intended for a campaign without restrictions; 
  8. viii. Non-restrictive irrevocable annuity or trust donation for which the residual capital is intended for a campaign; the value of the residual capital will be calculated according to the life expectancy of the donator and/or according to the amount of the annuity specified in the contract;


5.2 Examples of donations not credited to a specific campaign:

  1. i. Donations intended for projects other than those corresponding to the campaign’s objectives; 
  2. ii. Subscriptions which are not confirmed by a signature; 
  3. iii. Legacies, insurance policies, in kind donations and other types of donations intended for projects other than those corresponding to the campaign’s objectives or to projects that have not materialized during the campaign; 
  4. iv. Donations and subscriptions from previous campaigns; 
  5. v. Donations from governmental subsidies or public organizations; 
  6. vi. Payments of donations from previous subscriptions; 
  7. vii. Research contracts
Last update January 19 2009