27 January, 2017
Certain registered charities ware under a legal obligation to file certain information to the Charity Commission by 31st January 2016. For those charities with an obligation to file failing to do so can result in consequences.
Requirement and Consequences
A number of charities with an income over £250,000, are yet to file their documents before 31st January 2017. The Charity Commission is reminding all charities, especially those with a financial year that ends March 31st, to file their annual return or accounts.
Trustees of a charity are legally obliged to submit these documents and failure to do so, or if filed late, can have consequences. It can affect the charity's reputation and jeopardise public trust in a charity. The Commission will take action as they take failure to file, or late filing, very seriously. These duties are not restricted to the treasurer or the secretary, they apply to the entire trust body.
A charity can file their documents online and they will be published on The Charity Commission's register of charities. Your profile will be updated overnight with your information regarding the charity available for members of the public to see the next day.
What Do I Need to Submit?
It depends on the income. If income is under £10,000, then the charity will have to disclose their income and expenditure figures. It is advised that the best way to do this is through an annual return. If income is over £10,001-£25,000, then an annual return is required. If more than £25,001, an annual return form should be filed, along with a set of annual accounts. An independent examiners or audit report should be attached, with a Trustee's Annual Report (TAR).
All Charitable Incorporated Organisation's (CIOs) need to submit an annual return and annual accounts. If income is over £25,000, an independent examiners or audit report with a Trustees' Annual Report, will be required.
The Charity Commission provides some top tips to help comply with requirements on their website which can be accessed here.
Forbes Solicitors regularly advises and acts for trustees, charities and CIOs in a range of matters including regulatory issues. If you have any questions relating to charity law and practice, please contact Daniel Milnes.