Further Education colleges, as exempt charities, are required to abide by charity law.
A number of changes to the Act came about in summer 2023, but some were delayed and will now take effect from March 2024. Those that apply to the disposal of land for example, may affect FE colleges.
Making changes to governing documents
The Act is introducing a new statutory power that trusts and unincorporated associations will be able to use to make changes to their governing document. These charities will need to have the Commission’s authority to make certain ‘regulated alterations’ in the same way as charitable companies and Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIO).
The changes include:
- how unincorporated charities must pass trustee and (where they have members) member resolutions when using the new power
- that the Commission will apply the same legal test when deciding whether to give authority to charitable companies, CIOs, and unincorporated charities changing their charitable purposes
- a power for the Commission to give public notice, or to direct a charity to give notice, of regulated alterations to a governing document
Existing statutory powers for certain (small) unincorporated charities to change their governing document will be repealed.
Selling, leasing or otherwise disposing of charity land
The following provisions will come into force:
- provisions relating to disposals by liquidators, provisional liquidators, receivers, mortgagees or administrators
- provisions relating to the taking out of mortgages by liquidators, provisional liquidators, receivers, mortgagees or administrators
- changes about what must be included in statements and certificates for both disposals and mortgages
These provisions were due to come into force on 14 June 2023 but did not.
For certain mergers, new rules will allow most gifts to charities that merge to take effect as gifts to the charity they have merged with.
The existing statutory process for certain (small) unincorporated charity mergers will be repealed.
The Act will enable the Commission to:
- authorise a trustee to receive or retain a payment for work completed for the charity where the Commission decides it would be inequitable for a trustee not to be paid
- confirm defective or potentially defective trustee appointments
Further information can be found here.