19 March 2019 - Article
Charities newsletter – October 2017
The Charity Commission has published several updates in relation to annual returns over the past two months, including setting out the information required for the 2017 Annual Return which has now launched, its new digital filing service for charities, and a consultation on the 2018 Annual Return.
The requirements for the 2017 Annual Return remain largely unchanged from previous years despite the Commission's consultation last year which proposed wider changes and the Home Secretary's announcement this summer that charities would be required in the future to declare sources of overseas funds.
All registered charities with an annual income of more than £10,000 and all charitable incorporated organisations are required to file an Annual Return within 10 months of the end of their financial year.
New digital service:
The Commission has launched its new digital service in time for charities to complete their 2017 Annual Returns online.
The new service is part of the Commission's effort to ease administrative burdens for charities and as well as Annual Returns the new service will enable charities to update governing documents and name changes, and to confirm that information is still accurate when completing Annual Returns (rather than being required to re-enter information every year).
Additionally, it is anticipated that the new digital service will be able to tailor the questions that charities have to answer each year depending on the charity's size and type.
Consultation on the 2018 Annual Return:
The Commission has also launched a consultation on proposed changes to the 2018 Annual Return, which will apply to charities' financial years starting on or after 1 January 2018. The Commission is seeking views on changes to both content, including potential questions about sources of overseas funding, and structure of the Annual Return.
The consultation will close on 24 November 2017.