Charity Commission urges charities to respond to Sorp consultation

Changes could mean the sector risks losing 'one-stop shop' for accounting, says Andrew Hind

Charities must respond to an Accounting Standards Board consultation on public benefit entities, such as charitable, educational or housing bodies, or risk losing a "one-stop shop" for charity accounting regulation, according to Andrew Hind, chief executive of the Charity Commission.

Speaking at the launch of a report on views from the sector about the Statement of Recommended Practice, which governs charity accounting, Hind said the sector was keen to continue to have a single document containing all the information needed to prepare its accounts.

The ASB is currently consulting on changing generally accepted UK accounting principles to meet international financial reporting standards. The consultation is expected to lead to changes in the accounting regime for charities and other public benefit entities.

"In our recent consultation, the overwhelming response we've had is that the Sorp currently provides a one-stop shop for people preparing charity accounts," Hind said. "We feel the new solution must do the same.

"If you want to keep the one-stop solution, you should support us by responding to the ASB consultation.

"The Sorp framework is well embedded and we may think it is a permanent fixture, but that's not necessarily the case. Ultimately, the ASB must decide."

Ian Mackintosh, chair of the ASB, told the meeting that charities and regulators had strongly indicated that they wanted to continue with the Sorp.

He said the ASB wanted to see closer convergence between the charity Sorp and those used by other public benefit sectors such as education and housing.

A common standard might be introduced to cover reporting by all public benefit entities, he added.



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