Charities (Jersey) Law 2014 (the “Law”)
I run a Charity – what do I need to do?
The Law has introduced a test for what constitutes charity, it has established a new position of a Charity Commissioner and created a new body – the Charity Tribunal.
How am I affected by the Law?
At this stage, only the parts of the law relating to the establishment of a ‘Charities Test’ and the position of the Charity Commissioner have been enacted. There is currently little impact on existing charities.
Do I need to register as a charity on the new charities register?
If you are a charity already established in Jersey, happily there is no obligation for you to become a registered charity under the Law. Charities can continue to operate under the existing customary law provisions.
However, once the parts of the Law relating to the charities register have come into effect, only a charity registered under the Law can refer to itself as a charity and receive tax relief as such. If your charity wants to accept contributions from the general public, wishes to take advantage of tax exemptions or simply wishes to continue to refer to itself as a charity, then you should register once the applicable provisions of the Law come into force.
What should I do next?
If you do want to become a registered Jersey charity, and do not simply want to continue to operate under the existing customary law, then you should prepare a purpose statement, a public benefit statement, review your constitutional documents to ensure they will comply with the new charity test, and finally, review any accounts to be filed for and on behalf of your charity.