Who can become a member of NNAC?
NNAC welcomes newcomers and alumni/ae social clubs from across Canada to join our organization. Our organization is made up of these clubs represented by the women and men who independently run the clubs. 

Does our club have to be incorporated to join NNAC?
No, the decision to incorporate is up to each club. Incorporation provides some protections but is generally not essential for a club to start or operate. Please see the links below for information from each province.

Please note that some provinces use the term “registered” instead of “incorporated”. Also, some provinces use the term non-profit instead of not-for-profit. It is important to know that the federal government uses the term non-profit for charitable entities that are tax-exempt eligible.

How does a club incorporate?
Contact your provincial government agency:   
Alberta | British Columbia | Manitoba | New Brunswick | Newfoundland | Nova Scotia | Ontario | PEI Quebec | Saskatchewan 

Can our club get insurance and from whom? How do we contact them?
As a member club of NNAC, your club qualifies for not-for-profit insurance from The Cooperators. All insurance information may be found here

Are waiver forms required?
The decision of whether and how to use waivers rests with each club. Waiver forms are not required as a condition of membership with NNAC but are recommended.  

  • The waiver form should be kept on file and renewed annually; the type used is up to each club
  • Waivers usually form part of the renewal or application process, either by signature or tick box.
  • Some clubs use event-specific waivers for riskier events e.g. hiking.
  • Some clubs have spouses sign an event-specific waiver if they will attend an event.
  • An alternative to this is to have a ‘social’ membership for the spouse at a reduced rate, which means they would sign a waiver and be included in the insurance.

In 2016, NNAC was able to receive direction from an Ontario jurist as to whether we should provide member clubs with a generic waiver. We were advised that as laws vary from province to province a “onesize-fits-all” form is not possible. What we are able to do is provide you with examples of waivers that you can adapt to suit your needs. Waivers are not legal documents that will stand up in court alone but they do indicate intent which can be of help. Download sample waiver forms here

How much money can our club have in the bank?
As long as money is fluid, meaning flowing in and out of the account, there is no minimum or maximum that a club can have in its bank account. Most provinces do not allow not-for-profits to have monies in a fixed instrument e.g. GIC. If in doubt check with an accountant in your province. 

How long should we be keeping club documents i.e. meeting minutes, government filings etc?
Per Canada Revenue Agency, financial records should be kept for six (6) years plus the current year. Record retention for other club documents varies by province. Records can be kept in paper format or electronically and must be available to be seen by a club member if requested.

  • Alberta – 7 years
  • British Columbia – 10 years
  • Manitoba – 7 years
  • Saskatchewan – 7 years
  • New Brunswick – 6 years
  • Nova Scotia – 6 years
  • Ontario – 7 years

What are bylaws and does a club need them? Are there sample bylaws available?
Bylaws are your club’s internal affairs guidebook and should be available and shared with all club members. Your province might regulate the contents of your bylaws but generally, your bylaws establish procedures for holding elections, organizing meetings, quorum requirements, membership, dues, and discipline procedures, prohibitions, makeup and duties of the executive, financial dealings, and governance over record-keeping, fiscal year, and process for amending bylaws. Sample bylaws are available by contacting nnac.secretary@gmail.com. You should also consult with your provincial government agency.

NNAC highly recommends clubs have their own Bylaws. We also recommend clubs create a Policies and Procedures manual. The Policies & Procedures manual provides more detail than the bylaws and can be changed without a vote by the membership.

Can NNAC settle disputes within clubs?
No, NNAC is not a governing body. We can provide support, direction, and advice to clubs in the case of disputes but ultimately each club makes its own decisions. 

If we are non-profit are we tax-exempt ie we are getting a new website? Why are we charged HST?
Our clubs are generally not tax-exempt as they are not-for-profit or non-profit organizations. Charitable is one category of non-profit, and yes there are different rules that apply to them. 

Just being a non-profit and incorporated does not make you charitable, you have to apply and register as a charitable non-profit. Newcomer Clubs are not charitable organizations in nature and likely won’t succeed in attaining charitable status.

The GST and HST (even though it has a provincial component) are governed by the Goods and Services Tax Act and is administered by the CRA.  So both of these taxes are Federal.