The Downside of Charity Status?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Mesmerist, Jun 3, 2009.

  1. Mesmerist

    Mesmerist Well-Known Member

    Ok its all been discussed before but could you kindly repeat for the hard of hearing (me) the DOWNSIDE of having Charity status please. One Band I know is only allowed to write a set number of cheques a month. Is this true? Can a political party book you for an event? Is the committee far more restricted with Trustees taking more of the decisions? I`ve heard the upside but know that some Bands have chosen not to do this and I would really like to know why before my own Band does it. (Can you change Status if it doesn`t work out for you?)
  2. Mesmerist

    Mesmerist Well-Known Member

    Does the general silence on this answer my question? Charity status really is all singing and dancing?
  3. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    Blimey give people a chance!!! Six hours overnight is hardly a lifetime :)

    Wigston have just become a registered charity and I'm not aware of any restrictions on cheque writing etc, and I've no understanding as to why the amount of cheques you write would affect the way the charity works.

    The way we set up the committee / trustee thing is a two tier system (I think other bands do this also), where the trustees are sort of hands-off overlords and the committee do the nuts and bolts day-to-day running of the band. That said, several of our trustees happen to be members of the committee and of the senior band.

    These days the Charities Commission really want you to adopt one of their standard constitutions, which is fine, but they don't have the specifics needed to run the band properly (they are also horrendously difficult to read and understand) - mostly they are there to deal with the legalities of the charity and making sure the money raised is protected. We adopted a separate "rule book" which governs everything else around this core constitution - the way the committee is set up, dress codes, subscriptions, practice nights etc etc...
  4. Mesmerist

    Mesmerist Well-Known Member

    Apologies!!! Thank you for your reply as well which has reassured me. :D
  5. scotchgirl

    scotchgirl Active Member

    Also, if you have charity status you can claim giftaid on any donations (including band subs)...which is equal to an extra 25% of that donation. You can also claim it on money that you make from busking in the winter too....its worth checking out.
  6. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    True enough, but to claim giftaid the donator has to provide name and address details to prove they are a UK tax payer - that is unless there is a way around this that I haven't found.

    If there is a way around this please, please post it - it would've saved us loads this year...:)

    Having said that, its worth having just for subscriptions.
  7. scotchgirl

    scotchgirl Active Member

    I'll PM you, just in case I get it wrong...
  8. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    Re Gift Aid, Ian's comment is spot on: in order to claim Gift Aid on any money given, forms need to be submitted listing the full details of the donor. If any claim is submitted and it turns out the donor does not meet the necessary stipulations regarding tax-payer status, they themselves will be liable for the repayment of any sum falsely claimed.
  9. andyh

    andyh Supporting Member

    I was once asked to go on to a committee of a club I belonged to (nothing to do with banding) and the committee members were trustees of the charity.

    Having read the trustee terms and conditions I declined - as I realised all the trustees were personally liable should anything go seriously wrong with the finances, and I wasn't prepared to put my house on the line! You can apparently get insurance to protect yourself but the premiums are expensive.

    Unless the rules have changed since then the same reasons would prevent me from getting involved in any band situation where I might be a nominated trustee.

  10. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    Our band recently changed from a Trusteeship to a Limited Company. The details are quite complex, but one reason was because when we recently sold our bandroom we had some difficulty proving that the current Trustees were actually the Trustees, as some paperwork had gone missing. Trustee Liability was also something that we all considered when voting on this. We have retained Charitable status. I'm not a lawyer and I don't understand how it all works but we had a nice chap attend our last AGM to answer questions and explain everything to us. I'm sure the people who were Trustees before are now feeling a bit more comfortable, as we're about to embark on a building project to convert the warehouse we purchased with the proceeds of the sale into a pretty nice bandroom! (I say "we" but I'm not really involved in this - I tend to just turn up and make raspberries down a bass trombone).
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2009

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