This site uses cookies to provide you with a more responsive and personalised service. By using this site you agree to our use of cookies. Please read our cookie notice ( for more information on the cookies we use and how to delete or block them.
The full functionality of our site is not supported on your browser version, or you may have 'compatibility mode' selected. Please turn off compatibility mode, upgrade your browser to at least Internet Explorer 9, or try using another browser such as Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

Section PS 4210 - Contributions — revenue recognition

Effective date:

January 1, 2012

Published by the PSAB:

December 2010


This Section establishes standards for the recognition, measurement, presentation and disclosure of contributions, and related investment income, received by not-for-profit organizations.

A contribution is a non-reciprocal transfer to a not-for-profit organization of cash or other assets or a non-reciprocal settlement or cancellation of its liabilities. Government funding provided to a not-for-profit organization is considered to be a contribution.  There are three types of contributions identified for purposes of this Section:

  1. A restricted contribution is a contribution subject to externally imposed stipulations that specify the purpose for which the contributed asset is to be used. A contribution restricted for the purchase of a capital asset or a contribution of the capital asset itself is a type of restricted contribution.
  2. An endowment contribution is a type of restricted contribution subject to externally imposed stipulations specifying that the resources contributed be maintained permanently, although the constituent assets may change from time to time.
  3. An unrestricted contribution is a contribution that is neither a restricted contribution nor an endowment contribution.

An organization should recognize contributions in accordance with either:

  1. the deferral method or
  2. the restricted fund method

History of Section PS 4210




December 2010

New Section

This new Section is part of the new accounting standards for government not-for-profit organizations establishing recognition, measurement and disclosure standards.

Sections 4200 to 4270 are effective only for government not-for-profit organizations that elect to follow the standards for not-for-profit organizations in the CPA Canada Public Sector Accounting Handbook and are effective for fiscal periods beginning on or after January 1, 2012.

Note: The above summary does not include details of consequential amendments made as the result of other projects.

Correction list for hyphenation

These words serve as exceptions. Once entered, they are only hyphenated at the specified hyphenation points. Each word should be on a separate line.