Make sure the charity has ‘charitable purposes for the public benefit’. Register as a charity if your annual income is over £5, or if you set up a charitable incorporated organisation (CIO). To get tax relief your charity needs to be recognised by HM Revenue and Customs. Registering as a Charity (CC21). Its checklist of . The charitable trust created by this deed (‘the charity’) shall be Commission will object to a new name. The Charity Commission is the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales. .. paragraph 3 of our publication CC Registering as a Charity but in.

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Information to help your community organisation understand whether commissipn is or could be a charity, whether it should register with the Charity Commission, and how to do so. Please note this page is written and managed by the Resource Centre, an independent charity.

For more information about the Charity Commission, please refer to the Charity Commission website. Although charities cannot be profit-making, this is not what defines a charity.

Charity Registration | Resource Centre

Some not-for-profit organisations are not charities. See our page on Legal structures for community groups and not-for-profit organisations for more information.

The law defines whether or not an organisation coommission a charity. Registering with the Charity Commission does not make a group into a charity: There are 13 broad categories of charitable purpose. Charities registered before that date under one of the four broad heads categories of charity below continue to be charitable:. They describe the aims of your organisation. It is through its objects that you show your organisation has charitable purpose. If you want your organisation to be a charity, the objects in your governing document must be charitable.

If you want to register an existing organisation with the Charity Commission, you might need to change the objects in your governing document to make them charitable. If your objects clauses allow your group to do something which the law does not recognise as charitable, your group will not commissionn considered a charity, even if your main objects are charitable.

If one of the examples describes the aims of your own charity, you can copy it into your constitution. If you copy it without alteration, ckmmission Charity Commission will accept that your group has charitable purpose.

A charity is not allowed to have directly political objects, but it can engage in political activities if they help support its charitable objects.

For example, charities can campaign for changes to the law, or for existing laws to be upheld, if this supports their charitable objects. A charity must exist for the benefit of the public as a whole or to a sufficient section of the public. The specific benefits the charity provides must be clear and possible to evidence.


They must be balanced against any harms or detriments. For more information about public benefit, see Public benefit rules for charities on the Charity Commission website. In order to exist, organisations must adopt a legal structure. Some of these are listed below. There is much more information about legal structures in our page Legal structures for community groups and not-for-profit organisations.

An unincorporated association is a membership organisation. It can be whatever its members want it to be, and carry out whatever activity you choose. It is the easiest, quickest and cheapest way for a group to set itself up — you just need to write and adopt a constitution.

An unincorporated association cannot enter into contracts or own property in its own right — its committee members are personally responsible for its liabilities.

More information about unincorporated associations.

A charitable trust is run by a small group of people. It does not have a wider membership — trustees are appointed rather than elected. It cannot enter into contracts or own property in its own right — its trustees are personally responsible for its liabilities.

More information about charitable trusts. A Charitable Incorporated Organisation Chartiy can be a membership organisation like chrity unincorporated association or be governed by a small group like a trust. It must register with the Charity Commission as soon as it is set up — a CIO does not officially exist until it is registered.

More information about CIOs. A charitable company is a limited company with charitable aims. More information about Charitable Companies.

A Community Benefit Society is owned by its members, who hold shares and control the organisation on a one-member one-vote basis. It must benefit the wider community not just its members.

Charity Commission: Registering as a charity (CC21) | Practical Law

It is one of the few types of charity that is not regulated by the Commisskon Commission — if it has charitable aims it should register with the Financial Conduct Authority. More about Community Benefit Societies.

Once a charity reaches this threshold, it should register in the following financial year. CIOs do not formally exist as charities until they are registered. A few types of charity are regulated by different organisations instead of the Charity Commission.

Churches and Scout groups are also regulated separately. Although the majority of charities are required to register with the Charity Commission, there are no financial penalties for not being registered. It can take some time for a small charity to adopt a constitution which will satisfy the Charity Commission and develop a good book-keeping system.

To register your organisation with the Charity Commission you must complete an online registration form. If you provide all the information and documents required, and answer all the questions clearly, the Charity Commission state that they will complete the process within 30 days. Before completing the online form you should collect together all the documents and information that you will need.


The Charity Dommission produces model governing chagity for different legal structures, which you can fill in with details of your own charity. If your group has its own governing document, it is essential that it takes account of all the points in the relevant model even if it does not follow the exact format or wording.

All your committee members must sign a declaration to say they are willing to act as charity trustees. Comnission are responsible for the running of your organisation and it is important that they are willing to take an active part in it. All Charitable Incorporated Organisations must register with the Charity Commission when setting up, so they will have no accounts information at the time of registration.

They must provide information about how the charity will be funded. All Resource Centre information is available for free because we know small community groups have small budgets. However, we are a small charity, so if you are in a position to make a donation, it will help us to keep running this service into the future.

We use cookies to make our website work properly and to get anonymous information about how the site is being used. To find out more, see our Privacy notice for website users. Click OK to accept this use of cookies and carry on using the site. Would you like to make a donation? We hope you find this page useful. First steps for new groups. Getting a group started.

Organising a public meeting. Choosing a legal structure. Legal structures for community groups and not-for-profit organisations. Opening a bank account. Bank accounts for community groups. Setting up a social enterprise. Getting outside help with starting a group.

Is your AGM coming up? Support for Tenants’ and Residents’ Associations. Support with publicity and printing. Support for Resource Centre Member Groups. Favourite Funders for capital and equipment costs.

East Brighton Trust Fund. Gatwick Airport Community Trust. Hall and Woodhouse Community Chest. Ian Askew Charitable Trust.

JC Robinson Trust No 3. Mrs A Lacy Tate Trust. One Stop Carriers for Causes. Rotary Club of Brighton. Southern Housing Group Gardening Neighbours. Tesco Bags of Help. Love your neighbourhood fund. Trust House Charitable Foundation. Favourite Funders for existing activities and running costs.

Brighthelm Small Community Grant Scheme. Brighton District Nursing Association Trust. Dementia Commsision Alliance in Brighton and Hove.

Set up a charity

Sanctuary Housing Grand Ideas Fund. Favourite Funders for specific projects and new activities. Hilden Summer Play Scheme fund.