Every country has formulated certain laws for its citizens. When you decide to set up a charitable organization you have to get it registered with the local jurisdiction of your area. Certain laws have to be followed to run a charitable organization. It is necessary to study rules and regulations laid in the Charities Registration Act 1989 before any charitable registration so that your organization can work under laws to avoid any hassles afterwards.
When you become a trustee of a charitable organization you have certain legal responsibilities and duties which you have to carry out for smooth functioning of your organization. If any official, trustee, member of the committee, director of charitable organization fails to carry out his/her legal responsibilities or duties he/she may have to face criminal proceedings.
After charitable registration, it cannot be dismantled easily. It is not in the hands of the people who are running a charitable organization to dismantle it. A charitable organization can only be deregistered if sufficient funds are not available with the organization for its functioning or if there is no need of services provided by a particular charitable organization.
One member of the committee should have an experience of accounts so that he would be made responsible to submit the reports of income and expenditure of charitable organization whenever required.
It is very important to comply with all the rules and regulations stated in the Charities Registration Act 1989 as any breach of law can lead to criminal prosecution against any trustee or member of the charitable organization and he/she may be convicted for fine or imprisonment if found guilty.
Some charities function in more than one state. In such cases they have to comply with legal rules and regulations followed in each state. Some rules may be different in different states. For charitable registration one may need to fill registration form along with other documents such as determination letter, fundraiser contract if available and annual budget reports. Any non-compliance with the state laws may be known to the state when an inquiry is made or someone files a complaint with the state’s regulatory authority.
A state’s attorney general or any other similar governmental official is given an authority to look into the working of any charitable organization. He is free to conduct an inquiry and initiate any criminal proceedings if he feels any breach of law has occurred. He is legally appointed by the government to enforce the state’s charitable solicitation laws. If a charitable organization is found to be accused of any violation of state law, it may need to incur heavy damage to regain public trust.
Keywords: charitable registration, Charities Registration, charitable organization
By: Scott Paul
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