Specific legislation and regulations govern how societies (not-for-profit corporations) are created and run in B.C.  Societies may be formed for any lawful purpose or purposes, including agricultural, artistic, benevolent, charitable, educational, environmental, patriotic, philanthropic, political, professional, recreational, religious, scientific, social or sporting purposes.

Changes to the Societies Act

Changes are in the works that will refine the Act to make it more user-friendly, clear and consistent with the other acts. Your society may be affected when these changes come into force. Read more about changes that may impact your society's records, meetings, directors, and more.


Not-for-profit organizations are not required to incorporate. However, when a society is incorporated, it acquires the capacity of an individual, as well as an independent existence - separate and distinct from its members - and an unlimited life expectancy. If a society is seeking funding or grants, or charitable status from the federal government, there may be a requirement to incorporate.

Maintain Your Society

Once a society is incorporated, it needs to maintain compliance with the Societies Act by filing annual reports and updating society information as required.