• Thursday, October 31, 2019 10:39 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    Deputy Chair Susan Robinson writes: The Times and Sky News have been focusing on the amount of ‘money’ some of the large military charities have been sitting on. The analysis of these reports is somewhat flawed as they have not fully understood the difference on unrestricted reserves and free reserves nor the longer term requirements of the work that they will be doing with beneficiaries over a number of years. What it does emphasise is the importance have having a clear stated and understandable reserve policy in the Trustee Report. Further the report should be clear on what they are doing and will need to do in the future.

    Times article here. 

  • Wednesday, October 09, 2019 9:51 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    In light of recent criticism aimed squarely at the auditing profession, the FRC has beefed up its going concern requirements for audits commencing 15 December. In the first of a two-part series, Steve Collings takes a look at some of the changes.

    Full article here: https://www.accountingweb.co.uk/business/financial-reporting/frc-toughens-going-concern-requirements-part-1#.XZ2fNlQD-Dw.twitter

  • Tuesday, October 08, 2019 1:29 PM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    The Charity Commission have released a check list: "governance, finance and resilience: 15 questions trustees should ask."

  • Tuesday, October 08, 2019 9:50 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    CONFERENCE, Thursday 7th November 2019, Edinburgh

    The Scottish Government's consultation on proposals to change Scottish charity law closed on 1st April 2019 with its response and recommendations to come once all responses have been considered. Read more about the conference here.

    Featuring Lindsay Montgomery CBE, Board Chair, OSCR; Pat Armstrong OBE, Chief Executive, ACOSVO (Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations); Anna Fowlie, Chief Executive Officer, SCVO; and Dr Sophie Flemig, Chief Executive, The Cattanach Charitable Trust and Member, Accounts Commission for Scotland, this conference will examine the Scottish Government's proposals to change that law.

    The conference will:

    • discuss the wider strategic picture for charities and the Third Sector in Scotland
    • consider how the status and value of modern charities in Scotland can be more comprehensively enhanced
    • assess core challenges on leadership, funding, social partnership and the core value of charities to civic Scotland

    Featuring speakers from OSCR, ACOSVO, SCVO and the Catanach Trust

    Read more about the featured speakers here.

    Click here to read more

    Book 3 delegate
    places for
    the price of 2

    (discount applied automatically at
    end of booking process)

    Click here to view agenda

    15% off if not attended MacKay Hannah conference before
    (use code NEW15
    where prompted)

    Click here to book a place

    15% off if not attended MacKay Hannah conference in past year
    (use code RETURN15
    where prompted)

    Read more about the conference and agenda for the day on our website

    To book a place, use the button above or
    contact Gail at ghannah@mackayhannah.com or on 0131 556 1500.

    If you are a small charity or voluntary organisation,
    and the cost of this conference will make it difficult for you to attend,
    please contact Gail to discuss and we will see what we may be able do.  

    Contact Angus at amackay@mackayhannah.com or on 0131 556 1500

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  • Wednesday, October 02, 2019 11:29 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    Neil Webb from Accountingweb reports on the implications.

  • Tuesday, September 17, 2019 10:59 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    Dear Members

    Following our earlier message about the delay in trustee elections I can now update you.

    Eileen Houghton’s three year term came to an end and Eileen was happy to stand again and has been appointed as a trustee for a further three years term.

    Mark Heaton, known to many of you as a previous chair of trustees, has agreed to be co-opted to the board.

    The current Board of Trustees is:

    • Ian Barrett  - chair
    • Susan Robinson – vice chair
    • Kerry Clayton – treasurer and Wales representative
    • Maroof Adeoye
    • Shaun Birch
    • Tony Clarke – co-opted – Northern Ireland representative
    • Alison Cook
    • Mark Heaton – co-opted
    • Eileen Houghton -  chair of membership committee
    • Thomas Ojo
    • Lee Stevenson – Scotland representative

    At the end of June next year more than half of the trustees come to the end of their term of three years. All will be eligible to stand again but we may some vacancies. Can I ask you to consider whether this may be a role that you could undertake. If you would like more details of the role and the work involved please contact Farah, admin@acie.org.uk

    Ian Barrett

  • Tuesday, September 17, 2019 9:11 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    This week the Daily Mail and the The Times released reports that the RNLI were spending their donors' money inappropriately by supporting overseas  projects (swimming lessons, and creches in areas of Tanzania and Bangladesh with very high rates of drowning). The RNLI were able to demonstrate that these projects were all clearly demarcated and supported by restricted funds. Details of their global projects are here; https://rnli.org/what-we-do/international/the-global-drowning-problem

  • Friday, September 13, 2019 2:44 PM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    he Charities SORP-making body has today set out plans to change the way the charity accounting framework, the Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP)*, is developed so that it better meets the needs of users of charity reports and accounts.

    The group is introducing changes to the development process of the SORP following a comprehensive governance review, which recommended that it must change in order to meet “new public expectations”.

    The review was led by Professor Gareth Morgan and its findings and recommendations are available on the SORP website.

    Full report here.

  • Wednesday, September 11, 2019 9:06 AM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)
    • This is the first of a series of posts where we will summarise the news from industry relevant magazines.
    • ·      Charity Kind Direct reports that donations of goods in kind are down, as firms that usually donate are stockpiling for a No Deal Brexit. (6)
    • ·      Action Fraud: Charities report annual fraud losses totalling £8m (7)
    • ·      Government raises the society lottery sales to £50 instead of the £100m anticipated (7)
    • ·      Humentum and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (Washington), launch an International financial reporting standards project (7)
    • ·      July: the Court of Justice of the European Union, ruled in favour of HM Customs & Revenue that VAT on investment management fees may not be recoverable; Civil Society has asked if this may be extended to fundraising costs (13)
    • ·      Rob Preston of Charity Finance reports on the Reforming Charity Taxation Report (10):
    • o   All charities to report on the amount of Gift Aid received;
    • o   Donors who pay higher tax rates should have tax relief automatically passed to the charities they donate to (an opt out, rather than an opt in);
    • o   Suggestions that VAT charged to other charities for use of premises to become recoverable.
    • ·      Smee and Ford’s contract to read wills and notify charities of legacies has been extended for 12 months (14);
    • ·      Sarah Miller, of the MSc in Voluntary Sector Management at Cass, argues that Trustees should go beyond the compliance recommendations of SORP 2015 and declare the origins of donations, and the wishes of donors where expressed. Two useful tools for achieving financial transparency are Glasspockets.prg and 360Giving https://www.threesixtygiving.org/. (35)

  • Thursday, September 05, 2019 4:57 PM | Farah Mendlesohn (Administrator)

    The Charity Commission for England and Wales (CCEW) has recently undertaken a review of a sample of charities accounts.  The report published on 28 August 2019 starts with the following comment:-

    “The auditors and independent examiners’ of charity accounts are our second line of defence, after the Trustees, against mismanagement in charities.  We rely on them to scrutinise the accounts that the Trustees have appointed them to audit or examine and to report to us any significant concerns that they identify in the course of their work.  However, the results of our annual survey of the quality of charity accounts show that some auditors and examiners are failing to identify significant failing in the accounts that they are reviewing.”

    The CCEW have published a benchmark of Minimum Standards and it was this that was used when reviewing the accounts.

    The results were disappointing particularly the £25,000 to £250,000 income group where only 37% met the external scrutiny benchmark.  Although the accounts are the responsibility of the Trustees, Auditors and Independent Examiners should be reviewing them for compliance.

    In times of increased funding difficulties it is important that the accounts available to funders are accurate. Many Funders will be put off making grants to charities with accounts that are incomplete or contain errors.

    It is important when appointing an Independent Examiner that Trustees ensure they understand charities and the reporting requirements. 

    The Association of Charity Independent Examiners (ACIE) is the only membership organisation that  exists solely for Independent Examiners in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Members are able to act for charities subject to restrictions on income levels depending on their experience and ability.  Training courses are provided by ACIE to improve the quality of their work and to meet charity needs.

    The preparation and scrutiny of charity accounts is a specialist area. For Independent Examiners membership of ACIE will help you achieve and maintain standards looked for by the CCEW (and Commissions in Scotland and Northern Ireland) through support, training and advice which is available.

    There will be news of new training events shortly.

The Association of Charity Independent Examiners

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