The US owners of Canadian conservation lands who donate to American Friends want to ensure that future generations can experience and enjoy their special properties. Donors are often part of a multi-generational tradition that has kept their property in a largely natural condition.  They give some or all of their land, or conservation easement, to American Friends to protect it in perpetuity through stewardship by a qualified, local Canadian partner. Refer to our Fact Sheet for Potential Donors of Land and Conservation Easements for additional information..

American Friends’ Canadian partners evaluate the ecological significance of each potential land or easement gift. We work together to assess what features ought to be protected, and how best to achieve the landowners’ conservation and financial objectives. Our Fact Sheet for Land Conservation Organizations is a primer on protecting Canadian land owned by US taxpayers.

As part of the work involved in every gift, American Friends addresses the province’s requirements associated with being a foreign landowner or holder of a conservation easement. We also carefully follow IRS guidelines for charitable gifts of land and conservation easements, and assist landowners’ Canadian and US lawyers and accountants, to ensure the donation will be tax deductible in the US.

A team of attorneys and conservation professionals created American Friends’ procedures and documents when the organization first procured its binational tax status in 2010. The process has been perfected over the intervening years, thanks to the experience we gained completing 26 land and easement gifts.

Of particular importance is the cross-border conservation easement template American Friends developed to address both Canadian and US requirements.  We have completed conservation easement transactions in British Columbia, Ontario and Nova Scotia.  However, we create a customized document appropriate for each property and the donors’ interests and circumstances.

Contact Sandra Tassel, Program Coordinator, sandra.tassel@conservecanada.org, 360-515-7171 to discuss a land protection project and obtain template documents.