Membership Equity

About Membership Equity

Co-op membership is a little different. It means you own part of your local Co-op and can share in its profits, through something called equity.

Each year, your local Co-op chooses to return part of its profits back to members as equity. The equity payout is determined annually by your local Board of Directors, and the amount you receive depends on how much you’ve shopped at your local Co-op and how well the business performed over the past year. Part of your equity may be paid to you as cash and the rest remains in your own equity account, which grows every time you shop at Co-op!

Your full equity account can be paid out when you move or reach retirement age, in accordance with your local Co-op’s bylaws.

Frequently Asked Questions
As a Co-op member, you are a part-owner of a co-operative business, and are entitled to share in the profits of your local Co-op. These profits are given back to members in the form of equity in the business, and potential annual cash payments.
Each year, your co-operative chooses to return part of its profits back to members as equity, based on how much you shop at Co-op and how well your Co-op performs. The more you shop Co-op, the more your equity account grows!
Your locally-elected Board of Directors decides whether to pay members part of their equity in cash each year. The Board chooses a percentage to pay out for each business line (for example, 5% on fuel purchases and 3% on grocery purchases). These percentages change every year, based on the local Co-op’s profits.
Only members who shop at Co-op will earn equity in their business. The more you shop, the more you earn!
Members earn equity on everyday purchases, like fuel, grocery, liquor and more. Equity is not earned on gift cards, lotto, or tobacco products.
Cash back and equity payments are made once per year, at a date determined by your local Co-op. Your local Co-op’s bylaws will specify the age that members can apply for equity repayment, which is when the Co-op will start paying back the equity you’ve earned (typically this happens around the age of 65).
You can earn equity when shopping at any local Co-op where you hold a membership. Each Co-op association provides you with a unique member number, which ensures your purchases are tracked to your own personal equity account. There’s no limit to the number of Co-op memberships you can hold!
If you didn’t receive any cash back this year, it is likely because you didn’t shop enough at Co-op to qualify for cash back. Although it varies by year and association, members who receive cash back typically spend at least $100 per month at Co-op.
The GST line on your equity statement represents the government sales tax associated with your payment allocation. If you’re registered for GST purposes, the portion of the GST related to business use must be included on line 104 of your GST return.
Patronage allocations over $100 are subject to a 15% withholding tax that is deducted by your local Co-op and submitted to the Canada Revenue Agency on your behalf. You will receive a T4A statement that shows your total patronage allocation and the amount of tax withheld and remitted on your behalf.

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