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Letterhead Requirements for Companies and Charities

Letterhead Requirements for Companies and Charities

What are the letterhead requirements for companies and charities? Could you as an individual and/or the company/charity be facing possible prosecution and a fine of up to £1,000 with further fines of £100 per day being imposed?

Under the Companies Act 2006, a company registered with Companies House must include their company's registered name (as it appears on the company's certificate of incorporation) in all its business letters, order forms and websites, whether in hard copy or electronic, including:-

  • notices and other official publications

'Notifiable Events' Requirement for Charities

'Notifiable Events' Requirement for Charities

Charities may be aware that Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) are asking all charities to report Notifiable Events. Whilst there is no legal requirement to report an event, OSCR are keen to encourage charities to report to them when there has been a significant event which may or may not have a negative impact on an individual charity or the wider charity sector.

Types of notifiable events can be as follows:-

  • Fraud and theft
  • Significant financial loss
  • Incidents of abuse or mistreatment of

Notifiable Events Requirement for Charities

Notifiable Events Requirement for Charities

You may be aware of the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) updates that involved a request for all charities to report Notifiable Events. Whilst there is no legal requirement to report an event, OSCR are keen to encourage charities to report to them when there has been a significant event which may or may not have a negative impact on an individual charity or the wider charity sector.

Types of notifiable events can be as follows:-

  • Fraud and theft
  • Substantial financial loss
  • Incidents

Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill

The Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill proposes amending Part 2 of the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 which will enable certain bodies to buy abandoned or neglected land and to make such land work for the benefit of the community.

The Bill will allow communities to identify any public sector land or buildings that they feel they could make better use of with a view to strengthening community participation, community empowerment and encouraging community development.

There will also be new duties for community planning so that

What is a Scottish Charitable Trust?

A Trust is an unincorporated entity set up to hold property to be used solely for charitable purposes. So what is a Scottish charitable trust?

The main characteristics of a Scottish charitable trust are as follows:-

1.It is simple to set up.

2.The Trust Deed (which is the governing document of the Trust) will identify the individuals who are the trustees responsible for the control and management of the Trust and its assets. The powers and duties of the Trust are set out in the

Does your organisation pass the charity test?

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) has the power to apply the charity test as defined in the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 to review the charitable status of charities listed on the register. Does your organisation pass the charity test?

The five functions of OSCR as specified in law are to:

    1. decide which bodies are?charities
    2. keep an accurate Register?of charities
    3. encourage, monitor and?facilitate compliance
    4. identify and investigate apparent misconduct
    5. inform and advise Scottish?Ministers

To maintain charitable status, charities must continue

What are the duties of charity trustees in Scotland?

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) were made aware of reports in the press about an alleged high value severance package agreed by the charity trustees of Glasgow East Regeneration Agency for the charity's Chief Executive when he was made redundant. What exactly are the duties of charity trustees in Scotland?

OSCR's regulatory functions are set out in the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 (the Act) and include the requirements to encourage, facilitate and monitor compliance by charities and to identify

Procurement interim orders & public interest

The?case of Glasgow Rent Deposit & Support Scheme against Glasgow City Council and Ypeople (decided on 6 December 2012) highlights the court?s reluctance to delay a contract award because of an alleged breach of the procurement regulations where this would be detrimental to the public interest.

GCC tendered for a service providing increased access to housing for the homeless and specifically the provision of a deposit guarantee scheme and temporary furnished accommodation. The pursuer raised the action and asked that the decision to award the

Can procurement be used to deliver the Living Wage?

Using Procurement to deliver Living Wage - public bodies are increasingly under pressure to get the most out of their procurement processes, including addressing social and economic challenges.

The Scottish Living Wage Campaign aims to ensure that all employers in the public, private and voluntary sectors pay their workers no less than the Scottish Living Wage.

  • The living wage is higher than the national minimum wage,
  • It is set at a level that the Campaign considers to be the minimum income that households need to

Does your charity have restricted funds?

As at 1 November 2012, the Charities Restricted Funds Re-organisation (Scotland) Regulations 2012 came into effect. Do you know what a restricted fund is and what it means for your charitable organisation?

The Regulations define ?restricted fund? as??property (including money) given to a charity for a specific purpose and in respect of which conditions have been imposed as to its use?.

Examples as provided by the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) of such restricted funds are:-

  • A charity receiving a sum?of money for

The Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme

HMRC ?published for consultation the draft regulations for The Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme (GASDS).? Consultation will end on 5 December 2012.

It is intended that under the scheme all qualifying charities and community amateur sports clubs (CASCs) will be able to claim a top-up payment which is equivalent to Gift Aid on small cash donations totalling up to ?5,000 per year, without the need for individual Gift Aid declarations.

The present system of Gift Aid is a simple way for your charity to increase

Procurement Contract Award Notice Requirements

What are Procurement Contract Award Notice Requirements??Registered Social Landlords (RSLs) and other public bodies must go through a legally compliant procurement process prior to awarding a contract for works, supplies or services. This process is set down in the Public Contracts (Scotland) Regulations 2012. It is easy for public bodies to get caught up ensuring that the selection process is compliant and forget that, once this process is complete and the successful party has been identified, the method of informing interested parties of the outcome

Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill Consultation

The government has opened a consultation on their proposed Community Empowerment and Renewal Bill. It is an open consultation and the Bill will be drafted in light of the responses received.

Current Law

Currently a rural community with a population of less than 10,000 can register an interest in a piece of land and be given the first opportunity to buy it if it comes up for sale; as long as the community is able to demonstrate:-

  • community support for the purchase; and
  • positive economic,

What legal status do volunteers have?

We are often asked by charities: what legal status do volunteers have? And how they should be recruited? It?s increasingly common for school leavers and the unemployed to undertake volunteering to boost their CVs.

Although volunteers aren?t covered by discrimination legislation it?s sensible to adopt the same recruitment practices as paid employees, including a robust paper trail documenting every decision made in the process:

  • from shortlisting;
  • to interview notes; and
  • the offer.

Decisions should be recorded clearly and in an objective manner to minimise disputes

Is it time to reorganise your charity?s constitution?

Have you considered if it is time to reorganise your charity's constitution? Does?your charity?s constitution enable the charity trustees to:

- make changes to keep it relevant or,

- whether it is so outdated that the charity can no longer be true to its original spirit.

Charities with an outdated constitution may find that they are unable to make proper use of their charitable funds.

Registered charities must seek the prior consent of OSCR before making the following fundamental changes:-

  1. Changing the charity?s name
  2. Changing

Helping Scottish Charitable Companies become a SCIO

From 1st January 2012, charities that are companies or industrial and provident societies (IPS) can apply to the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR)?to convert to a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO).? Previously it was only unincorporated associations or trusts who could take advantage of this change. We help?Scottish Charitable Companies become SCIOs.

However, the conversion of a company or IPS to a SCIO may only take place if:-

  • In the case of companies, the company has more than one member
  • If either

What is Gift Aid and what are the Gift Aid Rules

We have been asked this question by a number of charitable clients, what is Gift Aid and what are the Gift Aid rules, as a result we felt a blog might be helpful.

What is gift aid?

Gift Aid is a simple way for your charity to increase the value of donations of money from taxpayers by claiming back from the Government the basic rate of tax paid by the donor.

When an individual, sole trader or partnership gives money to your organisation through gift

What are the advantages of becoming a SCIO? And disadvantages...

Since April 2011, existing unincorporated charities have been able to apply to change their legal form to the new legal entity of a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO). What are the advantages of becoming a SCIO?

Some of the advantages of becoming a SCIO are:-

  • Liability of charity trustees is limited and members are not liable to contribute to the assets if it is wound up.
  • It has a legal personality and can undertake transactions in its own right.
  • Single regulator - OSCR.
  • Title to

Does your Will include a Legacy to Charity?

Does your Will include a Legacy to Charity? ?If you are thinking of doing this there are some facts you may want to consider.?

  • Around 80% of us support charities during our lifetime.
  • 35% us want to leave the bulk of our estate to loved ones but like the idea of giving something back by way of donation on death to charities that we consider worthy of support.
  • Surveys indicate less than 10% of the population actually leave a legacy

Making provision for Charities could

Procurement Process: Challenging the Final Decision

Under the procurement regulations, an organisation engaged in a procurement exercise should allow a ?standstill period? of 10 days to elapse between notifying the tenderers of the successful party and awarding the contract. If an unsuccessful tenderer raises a legal challenge to the procurement process during the standstill period, the organisation cannot proceed to award the contract without first obtaining an order from the court.

In a recent case from Northern Ireland (Rutledge Recruitment and Training Limited v Department for Employment and Learning)

What is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation

A Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) is a new legal body (with effect from April 2011) for charities registered in Scotland.

What is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation?

  • It is?not?subject to the same reporting and regulatory requirements as a company.
  • It can enter into transactions on its own behalf, rather than by its charity trustees on its behalf.
  • The charity trustees are in general protected from incurring personal liability.? (However this protection is not absolute and charity trustees individually may be held responsible for the

Charities & RSLs Combat Climate Change

Climate change burden
Real burdens? ?Boring?, you may say?. Indeed, often little consideration is given to imposing real burdens or conditions upon the sale of land or property. After the introduction of?legislation in 2010, however, real burdens have become more attractive to charities, housing associations and individuals with an environmental conscience as they can now be used to combat climate change.

The Climate Change (Scotland) Act 2009 creates a concept known as a ?climate change burden?, which must have as its purpose the

The Bribery Act 2010

The Bribery Act 2010 will come into force on 1 July 2011.? The Act sets out a range of bribery related offences which could give rise to prosecution for both organisations and individuals.

The offences include:-
1.?Giving bribes
2.?Receiving bribes
3.?Bribery of a foreign Public Official
4.?Failure of commercial organisations to prevent bribery

The definition of a bribe is a broad one and can include any payment or other benefit which is intended to induce or reward the improper performance of a public function or

Procurement Process: Get the Basics Right

Clients continue to have a lot of questions concerning the procurement process and rightly so.? The risk of getting it wrong can be very costly for an organisation. So just how do you get the procurement process right?

A common pitfall under the procurement regulations is a failure to make the distinction between selection and award criteria. Such failures can be costly, leading to a challenge under the regulations. Although it seems that there is little guidance in the area, there are some useful hints

Gift Aid Declarations for Charities

Charities will no longer have to obtain signed gift aid declarations on the first ?5,000 of small donations per year in order for those donations to qualify for the tax relief, Chancellor George Osborne announced in his Budget speech.

Gift aid will be automatically applied to the donations. Osborne said 100,000 charities would benefit from this to the tune of ?240m. The announcement was the first of a number of major new initiatives affecting charities which Osborne described as ?the most radical reforms to charitable