Law Commission consults on 40 proposed changes to charity law

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The Law Commission has proposed 40 changes to charity law and asked for views on a further 57 issues where it feels there may be a need for reform, in a consultation document released last week.

The Technical Issues in Charity Law a Consultation Paper, produced in consultation with organisations across the sector, offers proposals to increase, amend and scrap some Charity Commission powers across a number of legal issues, including: property cy-près, the regulation of land transactions, mergers and insolvency.

The paper also reviews the procedures by which charities governed by Royal Charter and by Act of Parliament amend their governing documents.

The report follows ongoing consultation work that the Law Commission has undertaken to remove “unnecessary administrative and financial burdens because of inefficient and unduly complex law.”

The paper calls for a simplification of the way in which charities can amend their governing documents as laid out in the Charities Act 2011. It also provisionally proposes that statutory charities and Royal Charter charities both be given the power to amend their governing documents without the need to apply for consent from either Parliament or the Privy Council respectively.

The Charity Commission issued a statement on Friday, welcoming the consultation and commending the paper for “its focus on making things simpler for charities.”

The short statement said that, having been a part of the consultation process with the Law Commission, a formal response would be forthcoming.

The consultation closes on 3 July.