By Yoni Ungar

16 December 2020

In the wake of news, that the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission has just revoked the charity status of hundreds of Australian charities, it is imperative that all registered charities ensure that their documentation, reports and annual statements are up to date and in order.

The Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission has confirmed that it has revoked the charity status of 303 charities for failing to comply with reporting requirements, whilst the regulator has warned hundreds of others that they risk losing their charity status too if they did not bring their contact details or reporting up to date.

Once charity status is revoked, a charity will be referred to the Australian Taxation Office and they risk losing their vital tax concessions such as income tax exemptions or even tax deductible, deductible gift recipient (DGR) status. In rare cases, the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission has the power to backdate the revocation of charity status which can lead a charity to having to pay back the tax office for years of benefits of tax concessions.

To avoid this scenario, it is extremely important that you take the time to check your charity’s register and portal with\ the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission.

Importantly, you should ensure that the following matters are all up to date:

·         Contact details;

·         Addresses for services;

·         Governing documents;

·         Details of responsible persons;

·         Annual reports; and

·         Annual Information Statements.

You should contact a member of our charity law team if you have received any communications from the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission and are concerned that your charity status may be revoked. We are also able to offer you a charity health check to ensure that you are complying with all of your legal requirements.