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Three top tips for charity trustees this spring

Kate Hickey in our charities & not-for-profit legal team outlines three tips for charity trustees to consider this spring.

Updated finance guidance

The Charity Commission has updated key finance guidance to show clearly that trustees are ultimately responsible for their charity’s finances. It covers the importance of having a good reserves policy and how trustees should manage their charities in challenging circumstances.

15 questions trustees should ask

The Charity Commission has also updated its fact sheet ‘15 questions charity trustees should ask’ to ensure they comply with their duties as trustees and to help identify the critical issues - the charity’s purposes and plans, its solvency, its resilience and quality of governance. As a trustee you should be reviewing these issues at regular intervals and these questions will help you decide what you need to focus on.

Updated guidance for fee charging educational charities

A reminder that fee charging educational charities, including charitable independent schools, are encouraged to share their facilities with local state schools. The updated guidance now asks trustees of charitable schools to comment in their annual report on their approach to public benefit in sports, drama, music and other arts. Trustees should consider whether the objects clause in their school’s constitution needs to be updated in order to comply with this new requirement.

Kate Hickey is a corporate lawyer with a charities & not-for-profit focus. Working alongside Margaret Austen, she handles a range of matters, including regulatory and constitutional issues. She also works with colleagues in the firm's property and employment teams to advise charities on contractual matters.