Charity Commission adds 14 charities to overdue accounts class inquiry

The regulator is carrying out investigations of charities whose accounts are more than two years overdue and have last-known incomes above £200,000

Late accounts being investigated
Late accounts being investigated

The Charity Commission has added 14 organisations to its class inquiry into charities whose accounts are at least two years overdue.

The regulator announced today that the 14 charities had been added to the inquiry since October as a result of the commission re-examining its records of charities with last known annual incomes of more than £200,000.

The commission first launched its class inquiry in September 2013, concentrating on those charities with last known incomes of more than £500,000, before extending it to those with incomes of more than £250,000 the following November.

In January 2015, the commission widened the inquiry further to include those with last known incomes of between £200,000 and £249,999, meaning that 88 charities were included in the inquiry up to December.

A statement from the commission said that of the charities investigated so far, 73 had been removed from the inquiry after fulfilling their obligations and a further three moved to individual inquiries after concerns were raised that required further investigation.

Charities to be added to the inquiry in October were the Jewish anti-poverty charity Keren Chasodim Ltd, the children’s charity Effective Intervention, the Mesifta Talmudical College, the Jewish charity Gableholt Limited and the childcare charity Little Oaks Brighton Company.

The Little Love Lane Pre-School, Gresley Old Hall Community Welfare Centre and the Jewish Seminary for Girls were also added to the list in the same month.

They were joined in November by the Bucks County Agricultural Association, the East Anglia Transport Museum Society Limited, the Addiction Recovery Foundation, Smartys Day Nursery, the Coptic Orthodox Church Foundation Manchester and the Rossington Miners' Welfare Scheme.

Carl Mehta, head of investigations and enforcement operations at the Charity Commission, said: "As we continue to target defaulting charities, the message to trustees is simple: submitting this annual information is your legal responsibility, even if you delegate it to charity staff or your accountants to do."

He said that with reminders, default notices and online submission tools provided by the commission, there was "no excuse for non-compliance".

He said: "Our inquiry has already resulted in millions of pounds of charitable funds being publicly accounted for on the register of charities, and we will continue to crack down on defaulters, showing that we will not tolerate charities that demonstrate contempt for the public and their donors by failing to meet reporting requirements."

A commission statement said the regulator estimated its class inquiry had accounted for a total of £68m of charitable funds so far.

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