Applications to the OSCR for charitable status rose by eight per cent last year

The Scottish regulator's annual review says it handled 1,231 new applications in 2011/12, compared with 1,135 the previous year

Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator
Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator

The number of organisations applying for charitable status in Scotland rose by 8 per cent last year, according to the annual review from the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator, published yesterday

The document says it handled 1,231 new applications for charitable status during the financial year 2011/12, compared with 1,135 the previous year. Seventeen applicants were refused charitable status in 2011/12, it says -  one fewer than during the previous year.

The report says the OSCR registered 238 Scottish charitable incorporated organisations, the new legal form that allows charities to enter into contracts as corporate entities with limited or no liability for trustees. These included 161 new SCIOs, as opposed to existing charities that changed their legal status.

Earlier this week, the Charity Commission, which started accepting applications for CIOs in England and Wales last month, confirmed it had added the first three to its register.

The OSCR’s review shows it received 324 complaints about charities last year, 22 fewer than in the previous year, and identified a further 99 cases through its own internal referrals. The most common cause of complaint – occurring in more than a fifth of cases – was general governance. Misrepresentation was the second biggest, occurring in 11 per cent of complaints.  

Five formal complaints were made about the OSCR during 2011/12, down from eight the previous year.

The regulator removed 674 bodies from the charity register last year, including voluntary removals -  a fall of 118 from the previous total of 792.

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