Changes to HMRC Charities registrations

The following summary of changes to HMRC's guidance on tax exemptions for charities is taken (with thanks) from Smith & Williamson's Tax Update for 12 September (PDF):

Following the changes introduced in Schedule 6 to Finance Act 2010 HMRC will no longer comment or provide provisional clearance on draft charity documents, such as rules, memoranda or articles of association. Charities that must register with a charity regulator must do this before applying to HMRC for recognition as a charity for tax purposes.

Charities that are not required to be registered with an authority, for example those with income of less than £5,000, or those charities who are established in a country with no charity regulator, may apply directly to HMRC for recognition as a charity for tax purposes.

All charities wishing to apply to HMRC for tax exemption or to use the Gift Aid scheme, other giving schemes, and to be able to make claims for repayment of tax must apply using form ChA1. This form can be found at www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/cha1.pdf and guidance on completing the form can be found at www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/complete-form-cha1.htm.

The form must be signed by a representative of the charity making the application (the ‘authorised official’ who is the person authorised to correspond with HMRC on tax matters), not the agent. The form must also contain details of between two and four of the charity’s responsible persons (who must satisfy the ‘fit and proper person’ requirements). The authorised official can also be a responsible person.

Further guidance can be found at www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/guidance-notes/chapter2/chapter_2.htm and www.hmrc.gov.uk/charities/guidance-notes/chapter2/fp-persons-test.htm.

Comments

Charity registration

s.wardrop | | Permalink

And be aware that it could take up to 13 weeks or more to get a response - the HMRC answerphone advises anyone phoning to ask about progress not to bother if it is less than 13 weeks since they sent in the form!  And for repayments 7-8 weeks

Registration with regulator

jpcc1 | | Permalink

Will the requirement for pre-registration with a regulator (where applicable) be retrospective?e.g. what about organisations who are currently accepted by HMRC as a charity but not registered with the Charity Commision (and should be)?

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