Removal from the Charities Register

Can a charitable organisation be removed from the Charities Register?

Charities Act 2005, ss 31, 32

The Charities Registration Board can remove or deregister a charity:

  • if it no longer qualifies for charitable status because its purposes and activities are no longer charitable within the terms of the Charities Act
  • if there is a significant or persistent failure by the organisation or one of its officers (or collectors) to meet its obligations under the Act (for example, if the organisation fails to file annual returns), or
  • if the organisation engages in “serious wrongdoing”.

If the Charities Registration Board deregisters a charity it must give the charity notice and as soon as possible publish the notice, the reasons for deregistration and any order on a publicly available internet site maintained by the Charities Registration Board.

Charitable organisations can also ask to be removed from the Charities Register.

Tax rules for de-registered charities

Income Tax Act 2007, ss CW41, HR12

De-registered charities who have complied with their own constitution and rules are only subject to tax on their income from the date of the final decision to deregister. A deregistered charity that hasn’t complied with its own constitution and rules will be subject to income tax from the date of non-compliance.

A separate tax on net assets applies to deregistered charities who have not distributed any accumulated income and assets for a charitable purpose within 12 months of becoming subject to income tax.