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Thousands of Charities Fix Financial Errors


17 September 2015 at 12:10 pm
Ellie Cooper
Thousands of Australian charities have made contact with the national charity regulator to rectify errors made in their financial reporting.

Ellie Cooper | 17 September 2015 at 12:10 pm


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Thousands of Charities Fix Financial Errors
17 September 2015 at 12:10 pm

Thousands of Australian charities have made contact with the national charity regulator to rectify errors made in their financial reporting.

Since August the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) has been contacting registered charities asking them to review mistakes identified by the regulator.

The errors appeared in their 2014 Annual Information Statements, or annual financial reports. As this was the first year that financial reporting was required, the ACNC conducted thorough checks.

ACNC Commissioner, Susan Pascoe, said that charities would not be penalised for what appeared to be unintended omissions or mistakes, but she encouraged them to act quickly to rectify their entry on the Charity Register.
 

"It is in the best interests of the charity to have accurate and up-to-date information on the ACNC Charity Register as donors, grant-makers and the general community rely on this data," Pascoe said.

“The 2014 Annual Information Statement marked the first time that registered charities were required to provide financial information to the ACNC.

“While we understand that some registered charities have accidentally made errors in their reporting, it is important that any mistakes are corrected as quickly as possible.

“Charities have an ongoing obligation under the ACNC Act to correctly report each year to remain registered with the ACNC.”

Pascoe said thousands of charities had since reviewed their financial reporting statements, and those who found errors have already corrected them.

“I would like to thank those charities that have acted quickly and diligently,” she said.

“This has greatly improved the accuracy of the information available to the public on the Charity Register – Australia’s free, searchable, database of registered charities.

“It has been a tremendous effort for these charities to act so swiftly in ensuring that the financial figures provided are accurate. The ACNC applauds the sector for demonstrating such a commitment to transparency, which no doubt builds public trust and confidence in the sector.”

The ACNC will soon be releasing updated guidance to help charities prepare and lodge their 2015 reporting. The guidance materials will have a focus on common errors found in the 2014 reporting.

Charities that believe they have made a mistake in their reporting, or require assistance in fixing reporting errors, should visit acnc.gov.au/2014AISfinancialerrors.


Ellie Cooper  |  Journalist  |  @ProBonoNews

Ellie Cooper is a journalist covering the social sector.

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