Charities registration deadline extended

Compulsory registration of excepted charities has been put back by three months in order to give them more time to prepare.

The Charities Act 2006 requires charities that were previously excepted to register with the Charity Commission if they have annual incomes of more than £100,000. Excepted charities include churches and chapels, and charities related to the armed forces.

The process of compulsory registration was expected to start in October, but will not now begin until January 2009. However, the commission will still begin registering church and armed forces charities on a voluntary basis from October.

As many as 5,000 qualifying charities must complete their registration by next October. From that date, exempt charities with incomes of more than £100,000 and which are not subject to any other principal regulator will also need to register.

A list of exempt charities is included in the Charities Act 1993. It includes some educational institutions, and most universities and national museums.

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