Charity accounts considered inaccurate by auditors fell last year

According to the Charity Commission, 80 of 7,000 eligible charities had accounts that included auditors' modified opinions, a fall from 97 in 2016

The number of charities that filed accounts that auditors considered possibly inaccurate fell last year, figures from the Charity Commission show.

The regulator conducted a search of its records to identify accounts that were submitted in 2017 in which the auditors had issued modified opinions, which is where auditors decide that accounts are or might be materially misstated.

The results, published yesterday, show that 80 of about 7,000 eligible charities had accounts with modified opinions, down from 97 for accounts submitted in 2016.

Of the 80 charities the commission identified in its 2017 research, 48 had insufficient evidence to support the figures in their accounts, the commission said.

Another 31 charities did not comply with the Statement of Recommended Practice, although this was significantly lower than the 45 that did this in 2016.

One charity’s auditor decided it was not a going concern despite it having produced its accounts on a going-concern basis, the commission said.

All charities with incomes of more than £1m or with incomes of £250,000 and gross assets exceeding £3.26m are required to have audits, totalling about 7,000 charities in England and Wales.

The Charity Commission said the majority of the charities that submitted accounts with modified audit opinions in 2016 addressed the problems highlighted by their auditors in 2017, although 32 charities submitted accounts with modified audit opinions in both years.

The 80 charities in this year’s study had a total income of £202m, compared with £195m in 2016.

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