New Legislation in Place for Charitable Organisations

John A Sinnott Solicitors, charity legislation

Coming up to Christmas time, many of us think about donating items and giving financial support to our favourite charities.

We have many wonderful and worthy national, county-wide and local Enniscorthy charitable organisations.  Since mid-October this year, there is more of an onus on charities to fulfill certain legal requirements.

The Charities Act 2009 regulates charitable organisations and it was set up to ensure accountability and transparency within these organisations.  The main provisions of the Act were brought into effect on the 16th of October.  Hence, the Charities Regulatory Authority was formally established and charities are now required to register with the Authority.  Up until now the Authority has been operating on a non-statutory basis.

So, the legal obligations are:

  • To register with the Authority.  It will be an offence for an organisation to describe itself as a charity if not registered.
  • To have a purpose that is of public benefit
  • To keep accounts
  • To co-operate with the Authority.  Charities may be subject to inspections.Solicitors, accountants and trustees of the charity will be required to fully co-operate with the Inspector and provide all relevant accounts and documentation

Existing charities must apply for registration before the 16th of April 2015.  We can help you with this process and advise you of any legal obligations that you must fulfil.

Contact us today to discuss further.