Charity reporting deadline approaching: common errors to avoid

Charities who report on a financial year (1 July – 30 June) are reminded that they are required to submit their Annual Information Statement and financial reports to the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC) by 31 January 2018. The ACNC is encouraging charities to ensure their reports are lodged on time, and sooner rather than later. Generally, charities must submit their Annual Information Statement and financial report within 6 months of the end of their financial year period.

Here’s a quick checklist to help you through the process:

  1. Review your governing documents and check the requirements for an annual general meeting (AGM).
  2. Issue notices and hold your AGM in accordance with your governing documents.
  3. Appoint someone in the organisation to be responsible for completing and lodging the relevant form (2017 Annual Information Statement). Ensure that the relevant person has access to your ACNC Portal and all relevant documents including financial reports and the auditor’s report.
  4. Take time to prepare and review your Annual Information Statement.
  5. Ensure any changes to officeholder appointments or the Constitution are also updated with the ACNC.

The ACNC has identified the following common issues with 2016 Annual Statements:

  • failure to provide complete financial reports and in particular a significant number were missing:
  • statements of changes in equity
    • comprehensive income sections
    • statements of cash flows
  • failure to provide sufficient information where related party transactions were disclosed
  • failure to include a complete or signed responsible entities’ declaration including a solvency declaration
  • failure to disclose the statutory basis or other reporting framework, if any, under which the financial statements are prepared
  • failure to attach a signed or complete audit or review report.

Of course, the requirements vary depending on your charity’s size. If you have any questions on requirements for your charity, we are happy to assist.

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