Individual donations limited to C$1,100 per party, per
The recently called Canadian federal election, following a vote
of non-confidence in the minority government by the opposition
parties, highlights the rules applicable to federal political
contributions. The rules are unchanged since the enactment of the
Federal Accountability Act in 2006, which brought about
sweeping changes to the Canada Elections Act, as discussed
in our June 2006
Blakes Bulletin: Federal Political Contributions –
Shifting the Goalposts. However, the political
contribution limits are subject to inflation adjustment, and have
been increased since then.
Individual Contributions to Political Parties Citizens and permanent residents of Canada can make
political contributions of up to C$1,100 in total per calendar year
to the registered associations, nomination contestants and
candidates of a particular registered party. This upper limit of
C$1,100 is subject to inflation adjustment. The amount was
originally set at C$1,000 upon the introduction of the Federal
Accountability Act in 2006.
Similar rules apply to contributions to non-affiliated and
Corporate Donations Prohibited
All other entities, including corporations, unions and
unincorporated associations, are prohibited from making any
political contributions whatsoever.
Personal Tax Credits
The Income Tax Act offers a maximum tax credit to
individual taxpayers of C$650, calculated as follows:
75% on the first C$400;
50% on the next C$350; and
33-1/3% on any amount over C$750.
The Canada Elections Act includes provisions that
prohibit circumventing the limits of the legislation or the
requirement that contributions not be made by persons or entities
other than individuals, or colluding for that purpose.
The penalties for breach of the provisions relating to
contribution limits include a C$1,000 fine, three months'
imprisonment, or both.
The Canada Elections Act also permits individuals who
are citizens or permanent residents of Canada to contribute up to
C$1,100 in total to leadership contestants in a particular
leadership race. Other entities are not permitted to contribute to
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guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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