On 26 August 2016, the national charities regulator: the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC), revoked the charity status of 503 charities, for failing to submit their Annual Information Statement after a warning and then failing to lodge for the second consecutive year. In other words, they were all ‘double defaulters’. The consequence of this is that they lose access to the Commonwealth tax concessions they were entitled to as registered charities.

ACNC Commissioner, Susan Pascoe AM, said that more than 1,700 charities were originally at risk of revocation but 1,100 heeded the warning and submitted their outstanding Annual Information Statement. In some instances, however, these charities have ceased operating and simply have not notified the ACNC.

Ms Pascoe went on to say that the ACNC will continue to revoke the charity status of those organisations that fail to meet their obligations, as non-compliance can damage public trust and confidence in the entire sector. Not only is the Annual Information Statement a legislative requirement, for registered charities under the ACNC Act, but it also shows a commitment to transparency and accountability. The Charity Register is designed to support transparency, accountability, and provide the public and donors with accurate and up to date information about registered charities in Australia. The Charity Register has become an increasingly used tool to help donors make informed giving decisions. Charity Register searches have increased each year since the ACNC was established in December 2012. Donors can access the Charity Register free of charge at acnc.gov.au/findacharity.”

The list of revoked charities can be found at acnc.gov.au/doubledefaulters.

[ACNC media release] [LTN 165, 26/8/16]