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Accounting Standards for Private Sector Not-for-Profit Organizations

AcSB Exposure Draft – Revenue – Upfront Non-refundable Fees or Payments


The Accounting Standards Board (AcSB) proposes, subject to comments received following exposure, to incorporate into Part II of the CPA Canada Handbook – Accounting, amendments to Section 3400, Revenue. This amendment would also apply to not-for-profit organizations (NFPOs) applying the standards in Part III of the Handbook, as relevant. 

The proposed amendments would defer the effective date for upfront non-refundable fees or payments application guidance from fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2022, to fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2025.

Staff Contact(s)

Katharine Christopoulos, CPA, CA Director, Accounting Standards Board

Thank you for your interest in the AcSB Exposure Draft, Revenue – Upfront Non-refundable Fees or Payments.

Read what stakeholders had to say and stay up to date with this project.


In December 2019, the AcSB issued amendments to Section 3400, Revenue. The amendments provided additional application guidance on the requirements in Section 3400 related to various complex revenue topics, including determining when to recognize revenue from upfront non-refundable fees or payments. The effective date for the amendments was initially set for fiscal years beginning on or after January 1, 2021, but was subsequently deferred to January 1, 2022, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The amendments are applicable retroactively. 

As entities started to apply these amendments, the AcSB heard of application challenges from stakeholders – particularly member benefit organizations. These stakeholders were concerned about the decision usefulness of deferring upfront non-refundable fees over long member durations. They also expressed concerns about the associated cost of applying the amendments. 

The AcSB considered the feedback and decided that more time is needed to research the concerns raised by stakeholders and the underlying contracts. Therefore, the Board is proposing to defer the effective date of the amendments relating to upfront non-refundable fees or payments to January 1, 2025, while it researches the effects of the previously issued amendments. This research will inform the Board’s decisions on how to address the concerns raised by stakeholders.