Thinking Critically About the Taxation of Capital Gains on Donated Public Securities (or Looking Paragraph 38(A.1) in the Mouth

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Canadian Tax Journal. Volume 51, Number 2 (2003), p. 913-924.


The federal government announced in its 1997 budget that it would halve the inclusion rate for capital gains realized on certain charitable donations of public securities.1 At the same time, it issued a stern warning that “[a]fter five years, this provision will be terminated if it has not been effective in both increasing donations and distributing the additional donations fairly among charities.”2 These conditions seemed to imply that the government would need to see clear evidence of a positive impact before deciding to continue this incentive.

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