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The legal obligations of charities under the Charities Acts and the Companies Acts
All charities must comply with:
- the Charities Acts 1992 (Part III), 1993, 2006: trustees of smaller organisations 2006 Act (the Office of the Third Sector)
- the Trustees Acts 1925, 2000: the most recent Act concerns the powers of trustees regarding investments and delegation.
- Charity Commission regulation: requires compliance (depending on annual income) on the submission of annual returns, reports and accounts
- the Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP) 2005: published by the Charity Commission
- laws on trading, political activities and fundraising
- regulation covering people who are disbarred from acting as trustees under the Charities Act 1993 or your Memorandum and Articles.
Charitable companies (those incorporated as a company limited by guarantee) must comply with provisions in the Companies Acts 1985, 1989, 2006. Additional requirements include filing details of trustees as directors at Companies House.
Source: Published with permission from Cass Centre for Charity Effectiveness. This material is taken from "Tools for Success: doing the right things and doing them right", published in October 2008. Download or buy your copy from Cass Centre for Charity Effectiveness.
- Charity Commission - regulator for England and Wales
- Charity law and regulation - Cabinet Office
- Charity law and regulation section on the main NCVO website
- Department of Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform - business regulation
- Institute of Chartered Secretaries
- Sandy Adirondack - legal update for charities
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