Charity Update - 17 November 2020 | Fieldfisher
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Charity Update - 17 November 2020


United Kingdom

Welcome to the latest issue of Fieldfisher's Charity Update.

Items in this issue cover reports on the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on charities and an increase in complaints to the Fundraising Regulator, as well as lobbying the Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) Select Committee on appointing the new Charity Commission chair.

Also, please note that the Charity Commission has published a new set of guides to help trustees.

Neil Palmer

13 November 2020

Coronavirus Community Support Fund awarded to 8,250 charities

Small and medium charities across England awarded share of £200m emergency funding to help them continue their vital work with vulnerable people during the pandemic.

Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport

13 November 2020

Legal Update in light of McKee & Others v Charity Commission for Northern Ireland

The Charity Commission of Northern Ireland has issued an update on the February 2020 decision of the Court of Appeal to uphold a legal challenge to the delegation of decision-making powers by the Commission to members of staff. The judgment is welcomed as a vital clarification of the law, which is imperative to enable the Commission to undertake its statutory duties and give charities confidence in the regulator and its powers.

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland

13 November 2020

Fundraising Regulator publishes independent evaluation of the Fundraising Preference Service

The Fundraising Preference Service allows members of the public to stop direct marketing communications from fundraising organisations registered in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The evaluation was commissioned as part of the Fundraising Regulator's commitment to review the service three years on from its launch.

Fundraising Regulator

10 November 2020

Report on the Financial Reserves of Charities on the Eve of the COVID-19 Pandemic

A project to understand the social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic publishes research into the reserves and expenditures of over 12,000 English and Welsh charities. Findings include that many charities had low levels of reserves pre-pandemic.

University of Birmingham

9 November 2020

National Fund could release £500m, court decides

The High Court has ruled that the original purpose of the National Fund cannot be carried out and the court can make a scheme altering this charitable trust pursuant to its cy-près jurisdiction. The decision is the latest ruling concerning the National Fund, which was established in 1928 with the aim of paying off the UK’s national debt.

England and Wales High Court (Chancery Division)

4 November 2020

Charity Commission chair - sector leaders call for party political neutrality in the appointment process

ACEVO coordinates a letter from ten charity sector organisations to the DCMS Select Committee. The signatories request that transparency, accountability and political neutrality be prioritised in the appointment process for the next chair of the Charity Commission.


4 November 2020

Fundraising Regulator publishes Annual Complaints Report

The Fundraising Regulator reports on complaints received by it over the past year, alongside complaints reported by some of the UK’s largest charities. Complaints to the Fundraising Regulator increased by 13% compared to 2018/19.

Fundraising Regulator

2 November 2020

Regulator’s new “5-minute guides” will support charity trustees to meet duties

The Charity Commission launches a new set of simple, easy to understand guides to help trustees including on financial oversight and managing conflicts.

The Charity Commission

26 October 2020

Voluntary Sector Impact Barometer survey

Results for the first COVID-19 Voluntary Sector Impact Barometer survey have been published. Two in five of charities and community groups report a deteriorating financial situation.

NCVO, Nottingham Trent University & Sheffield Hallam University

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Areas of Expertise

Tax and Structuring