Close up of calendar on the table.

The latest set of changes will come into force on 7 March 2024. The Charity Commission will also be publishing updated guidance. A summary of the changes from the Commission can be found below.

Changes to Governing Documents

There is a new statutory power for trusts and unincorporated associations 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.

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Existing statutory powers for certain (small) unincorporated charities to change their governing document will be repealed.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

Charity Mergers

These 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The existing statutory process for certain (small) unincorporated charity mergers will be repealed.

Other provisions

The Commission will be able 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

The Department for Culture Media and Sport has confirmed that the reforms to the ex gratia payment rules will not feature in this set of changes but will be commenced later in 2024.