New Regulations Governing Incorporated Associations in Victoria
The Association Incorporation Reform Regulations 2023 came into effect on 18 November 2023.
Following a public consultation on Engage Victoria, the new regulations will address model rules, fees, penalties, and financial reporting tier thresholds.
The updated regulations will affect Victorian incorporated associations as follows:
i. Change of reporting tiers – the revenue thresholds will now be aligned with those used by the ACNC for small, medium, and large.
ii. The regulations will affect all Victorian incorporated associations, except those that are registered charities.
iii. Incorporated associations should check to see if they are likely to fall into a different reporting tier. The new tiers will apply to reporting for the financial year ending on or after 1 July 2023.
iv. The new regulations have changed the fees incorporated associations may need to pay for lodging applications with Consumer Affairs Victoria (for e.g., change of name, or the registration of a new association).
v. There is also a new threshold for voluntary cancellation. This will make it easier to access the voluntary cancellation process if assets are under $50k (which has increased from $10k).
vi. Key changes to the model rules include:
a. Modern communication technologies, such as the use of online membership applications, recording email addresses in the register of members, and online attendance at general and committee meetings;
b. New processes for disciplinary appeals where members have been suspended or expelled by a disciplinary committee;
i. members will have a period of 7 days to lodge an appeal with the secretary of the association; and
ii. the appeal must be heard by an appeal subcommittee comprising at least 3 neutral persons who were not involved with suspending or expelling that member.
c. Clarification of the rules for appointing and paying a mediator to resolve an internal grievance.
d. Requirement that the committee maintain a conflict-of-interest register.