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Back to "Community & Associations Newsletter - May 2019"


ACNC Update

Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission keeps constantly active. Here are some notes on recent projects.

External Conduct Standards

We commented on these new standards in our December 2018 newsletter edition. In summary the standards address:

  • Standard 1: Activities and control of resources (including funds)
  • Standard 2: Annual review of overseas activities and record‑keeping
  • Standard 3: Anti‑fraud and anti‑corruption
  • Standard 4: Protection of vulnerable individuals

These are all due to commence from 1 July 2019 and extend to cover all registered charities including basic religious charities, who should be taking steps to implement procedures to ensure:

  1. Any activity sending money overseas is monitored and acquitted with accurate records proving funds reach their destinations and also their purpose
  2. Any hint of use of a charity for money laundering will result in shut down, deregistration
  3. Persons in third countries, who are most vulnerable, will be a focus

Here is a link to the full text of the Standards, for reading and familiarisation.

ACNC will have oversight of the Standards and has called for submissions from the sector on Guidance material it has circulated.

Redress and ACNC Responsible Persons

As charitable organisations are joining the Redress Scheme with respect to compensation for victims of institutional child sexual abuse, the Operator may question the names and identity of board, trustees or leadership team members, notwithstanding those persons are recorded with ACNC as the current responsible persons.

The Operator may be only reading the Australian Securities and Investment Commission register, which, since the introduction of the ACNC in 2012, has been superseded as the place for changes in office holders names to be recorded.  If any query is raised by the Operator, it should be referred to the ACNC register.

Health Promotion Charities

The ACNC is reviewing its current Interpretation Statement on health promotion charities.

These are charities which have DGR status and are institutions whose principal activity is to promote the prevention or the control of diseases in human beings.

The case of Waubra Foundation and Commissioner of Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission [2017] AATA 2424 contains relevant material so we would expect it would be referenced in the revised statement.

Josephine Heesh, Partner

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