I need accounting knowledge/practices of a charity

geek84 Registered Posts: 568 Epic contributor 🐘
Hi Folks

I am thinking of taking over some of the responsibilities of the treasurer and the accountant at my local place of worship. It is registered as a charity, and I would be most grateful if you kind folks out there could help with some of the queries I have -

1. Would it also need to be registered at Companies House?
2. If so, would the accounts be available to view by the general public?
3. Would the accounts need to be filed by 31st October (if paper based), and 31st January (if online), for the previous tax year?

Thanks in advance for your responses.


  • Jan
    Jan Registered Posts: 654 Epic contributor 🐘
    I used to be treasurer of my local church, from memory the church (Cof E) was an unregistered charity, with its own accounting rules to follow re restricted and unrestriced funds etc. Year end was 31st December. Everything had to be independently examined/audited depending on the income throughout the year, so you can't be treasurer and accountant, but I'm sure you realise that! The accountant would be able to advise.
    I think the church published a book which I used and the accountant who examined the accounts was amazed that I had read it! (Not all, just what I needed).
  • CeeJaySix
    CeeJaySix Registered Posts: 645
    1. Depends on what type of charity it is - charities with income over £5000 have to register with the Charities Commission. Charitable Companies have to register with Companies House as well; Trusts and Unincorporated Associations don't (generally).

    2. Yes - if your income is over £25,000, they will be displayed on the Charities Commission website anyway, so it's by-the-by (that's also the threshold for requiring independent examination/audit).

    3. Charities Commission requires submission within 10 months of your financial end of year. I think Companies House is the same as Ltd, ie. 9 months from your year-end for filing.

    Have a good look round the FAQs on the Charities Commission website, they cover most things in a not-particularly-easy-to-find-anything kind of way!
  • geek84
    geek84 Registered Posts: 568 Epic contributor 🐘
    Hi Folks

    Many thanks for your replies.

    The charity is my local temple, and perhaps rules are different to the ones that apply to churches?

    Do the accounts have to be registered and submitted to both the Charities Commission and Companies House?

    Thank U
  • CeeJaySix
    CeeJaySix Registered Posts: 645
    Although there are regulations covering Church charities (which I'm not familiar with, and couldn't tell you whether they apply equally to your temple), the question of whether the account require submitting to Companies House, as I said above, is down to the legal structure of the charity. If it's set up as a Trust, no; if as a charitable company, then yes.
  • BigJim
    BigJim Registered Posts: 14 Regular contributor ⭐
    You may have found out by now but if income over £25k it also must have a independent examination (a light touch audit). If income over 500k or assets exceed 1.4m must have accounts audited. This is a HRMC requirement and not related to whether the charity is registered.
    The charity commission website gives very clear guidelines...I'd welcome more questions on charity law!
  • geek84
    geek84 Registered Posts: 568 Epic contributor 🐘
    Thanks BigJim
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