Statutory inquiry into charity for repeat failure to file accounts in the UK

15 November 2023 | Applicable law: England and Wales | 2 minute read

The Charity Commission has recently opened a statutory inquiry into The Queen Alexandra Cottage Homes due to the charity's failure to file its annual accounts for four consecutive years. The charity had previously been included in the Charity double defaulter class inquiry which looked at charities which had failed to file their annual reports, accounts or returns for two or more years in the last five years.  

The inquiry will examine:

  1. The extent to which the trustees have and are complying with their legal duties in respect of the administration, governance and management of the charity, particularly their accounting and reporting responsibilities;
  2. the financial management of the charity;
  3. the extent to which any failings or weaknesses in the administration, governance and management of the charity identified during the inquiry were the result of misconduct and/or mismanagement by the trustees.

All registered charities with income above £10,000 and all charitable incorporated organisations (CIOs) are required to file an Annual Return and, depending on the charity's income, submit a copy of the Trustees' Annual Report and Accounts as part of the Annual Return. Annual Returns and Accounts must be filed within 10 months of the end of the charity's financial year and the Register of Charities shows where a charity has failed to file its Annual Return or filed late. 

There have been some changes to the Annual Return recently: 

  • From a practical perspective, the Annual Return is now filed through the new 'My Charity Commission Account'; this is the Charity Commission's new platform to allow charities to access the Commission's online services. If you have not yet set up access through My Charity Commission Account, we recommend that you do so as soon as possible and in good time before the deadline to file your Annual Return. 

For more information on the revised questions and guidance notes from the Charity Commission, please see here

If you have questions please get in touch. 

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.


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