After your organisation registers as a charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC), you must meet ongoing obligations, including to:
- keep records
- report annually to the ACNC
- notify the ACNC about certain changes.
From 1 July 2013, it is also expected that your registered charity must comply with a variety of "governance and conduct standards" and a new statutory definition of "Charity". Basic religious charities are exempt from some of these obligations.
For small charities
You have to notify the ACNC of changes as soon as you reasonably can and no later than 60 days after you are aware of the change.
For medium and large charities
You have to notify the ACNC of changes as soon as you reasonably can and no later than 28 days after you are aware of the change.
You must also notify the ACNC if your charity significantly fails to meet its obligations under the ACNC Act and as a result may no longer be entitled to be registered. You have to notify the ACNC of changes as soon as you reasonably can and no later than 28 days after you are aware of the change.
From 3 December 2012, your charity must keep:
- financial records – to show your charity's financial transactions, position and performance
- operational records – other documents about your charity's operations such as meeting minutes, reports, written details of your charity's activities, programs or services. You need to keep operational records that allow the ACNC to assess whether:
- your organisation continues to be a charity. For example, the documents should show what activities you are doing to further your organisation's charitable purpose.
- your organisation is complying with its responsibilities under the ACNC Act.
Reporting to the ACNC
All registered charities must report annual information to the ACNC.
Reporting obligations are based on the size (revenue) of a charity:
- small charity – annual revenue is less than $250,000
- medium charity – annual revenue is $250,000 or more, but less than $1 million
- large charity – annual revenue is $1 million or more.
For the 2013 reporting period, all registered charities must report basic non-financial information through the 2013 annual information statement (AIS). The statement will contain only basic non-financial information. It is due within six months of the end of your reporting period. For example, if your reporting period is 1 July 2012 to 30 June 2013, your statement is due on or before 31 December 2013.
All ASIC organisations must still provide financial statements for the 2013 reporting period to ASIC.
For the 2014 reporting period onwards, all registered charities (except basic religious charities) must complete the 2014 AIS. The statement contains both financial and nonfinancial information. Medium and large charities must submit an annual financial report. This is due within six months of the end of your reporting period. For example, if your reporting period is 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014, your financial report is due on or before 31 December 2014.
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