Charity Commission posts latest results of compliance work - Thorne Widgery

The Charity Commission’s compliance work has resulted in over £25 million worth of charity income being officially accounted for, a new report has revealed.

The figures were published as part of the regulator’s statement of results of its pre-inquiry and class inquiry work into “double defaulter” charities.

These types of charities are defined as those which have defaulted on their statutory obligations to meet reporting requirements by failing to file their annual documents two or more times in the last five years.

This year’s statement involved 80 charities who were investigated between 2017 and March 2018.

The Commission said approximately £25 million of charity income relating to 54 charities had been accounted for as a result of their inquiry work during this period. It found that a further 24 charities ceased to exist or did not operate and were therefore removed from the register of charities.

The regulator also exercised statutory powers to freeze more than £50,000 of “unprotected charity funds”.

Further action is being taken against five charities as a result of regulatory concerns and/or persistent defaulting, it added.

Commenting on the findings, Harvey Grenville, Head of Investigations and Enforcement at the Charity Commission for England and Wales, said it is important that the public are able to understand how their donations are being spent and help their intended causes.

“Trustees of registered charities with an annual income of over £25,000 are under a clear legal duty to ensure that their charity’s accounts and annual returns are submitted to us on time,” said Mr Grenville.

“Too many trustees are still failing to file on time or properly notify us when a charity has been wound up. This report should serve as a reminder to other trustees that failure to comply with these duties is regarded as mismanagement by the Commission and can result in regulatory action against a charity or its trustees. Trustees who persistently breach this duty and are unwilling to mend their ways face the very real threat of removal or disqualification.”