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Home > Charitable fundraising  > Starting a charity

Starting a charity

> What is a charity?
> Do you need to register the charity?
> Do you need a licence to conduct charitable appeals?
> What are charitable purposes?
> What are examples of non-charitable purposes which are often mistaken for charitable organisations?
> What is a not-for-profit organisation
> Do you need to register a not-for-profit organisation?
> What are the advantages of being licenced as an authority holder?
> What is a governing instrument?
> What legal form should I adopt for the charity?
> What is the difference between an unincorporated and incorporated association?
> Which organisations use an unincorporated structure?
> Which organisations use an incorporated structure?

What is a charity?

 

Do you need to register the charity?

No. However, persons or organisations that wish to conduct fundraising appeals for charitable purposes may require a licence.

 

Do you need a licence to conduct charitable appeals?

 

What are charitable purposes?

Charitable purposes can be grouped under four main headings:

 

What are examples of non-charitable purposes which are often mistaken for charitable organisations?

The following are examples of organisations or purposes which are often assumed to be charitable, but in fact are not:

 

What is a not-for-profit organisation?

To qualify as a not-for-profit organisation, all the income, assets and surplus funds of your organisation must be used to achieve its objectives and may not be distributed to members.

 

Do you need to register a not-for-profit organisation?

A not-for-profit organisation only needs to register if they wish to be incorporated.

 

What are the advantages of being licensed as an authority holder?

 

What is a governing instrument?

A governing instrument outlines the objects or aims of the charity. We recommend it contains the following:

View the template for a model governing instrument (Starting a Charity - Suggested Rules).

 

What legal format should I adopt for the charity?

There are two formats:

 

What is the difference between an unincorporated and incorporated association?

 

Which organisations use an unincorporated structure?

It is appropriate to establish an unincorporated organisation where any one or more of the following applies:

Which organisations use an incorporated structure?

It is appropriate to establish an incorporated association where some of all of the following apply:

PDF Icon Starting a Charity fact sheet (51 kb).