ACNC strips charity status from hundreds of organisations
19 November 2020 at 4:39 pm
“To maintain confidence and trust in the sector it is important that we provide the Australian community with accurate and up-to-date information,” the ACNC assistant commissioner says.
More than 300 Australian charities have had their charitable status revoked for twice failing to submit their annual information statements.
The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) revealed on Wednesday that it has revoked the registration of 303 organisations, making them ineligible for charitable Commonwealth tax concessions.
Assistant commissioner Anna Longley recently notified more than 300 charities that they risked losing their charity registration if they did not keep their contact details and reporting up to date.
She said a public notice was issued 28 days ago as the ACNC was unable to contact the charities directly.
“To maintain confidence and trust in the sector it is important that we provide the Australian community with accurate and up-to-date information on the Charity Register… [which] contains information such as a charity’s activities, beneficiaries and financial details,” Longley said.
“It was searched more than 3 million times last financial year, reflecting the growing awareness of the register as a valuable resource for the public, donors, regulatory bodies and government.”
Longley noted that information on the Charity Register was mainly collected from the annual information statements (AIS), which charities must submit to maintain their ACNC registration.
“Revoking charities that are no longer active or fail to meet their obligations is an important part of the ACNC’s role as the regulator,” she said.
Data provided to Pro Bono News last year revealed that 10,644 organisations had lost their charity status for twice failing to submit their AIS since the ACNC started the process in 2014-15.
More than 5,000 organisations lost their status in the first year alone, because many defunct charities were automatically transferred from the Australian Taxation Office when the ACNC was formed.
Since then, the number of charity revocations for “double defaulting” has dwindled, affecting only 196 organisations in 2017-18.
The full list of revoked charities can be found here.