The Sorp Revision: Volunteers and donated items

By finance expert Don Bawtree

Don Bawtree
Don Bawtree

The Sorp exposure draft has revisited accounting for volunteers, donated items, property, services and facilities. All income now has to be booked when it is probable, not reasonably certain. That will apply to donated items too.

Donated services (perhaps secondments?) are accounted for on the value of the gift to a charity. So a chief executive on a corporate social responsibility day will not see his or her salary appear as income.

The principle that volunteers should not be in the accounts is now limited to "general volunteers", an undefined term. The accounts will now have to include a note explaining the role and scale of volunteering. This used to be in the annual report, so did not need auditing; but now it will.

Donated goods, such as shop stock, don't go into the accounts if they are difficult to value and the systems can't cope with recording it all. This might be difficult to justify and can apply only to a charity, not a subsidiary. Goods given for distribution will now go into the accounts as stock if the charity still holds them at the year-end.


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