The Services that the Charities Regulator offer, details of functions and services that the organisation provides and the decision making process are listed as follows:
Information Required in the Scheme
The Charities Regulator’s key functions are to establish and maintain a public register of charitable organisations operating in Ireland and ensure their compliance with the Charities Acts.
The Charities Regulator also engage in the provision of services to charities, including the authorising of appointments of new charitable trustees, the framing of schemes of incorporation, authorisation of Cy-Près schemes and disposition of lands held upon charitable trusts.
Under Part 4 of the Charities Act 2009 the Charities Regulator has the power to appoint investigators to investigate the affairs of any charitable organisation.
The Charities Regulators remit covers a wide range of activity including:
- increase public trust and confidence in the management and administration of charitable trusts and charitable organisations;
- promote compliance by charity trustees with their duties in the control and management of charitable trusts and charitable organisations;
- promote the effective use of the property of charitable trusts or charitable organisations;
- ensure the accountability of charitable organisations to donors and beneficiaries of charitable gifts, and the public;
- promote understanding of the requirement that charitable purposes confer a public benefit;
- establish and maintain a register of charitable organisations;
- ensure and monitor compliance by charitable organisations with the Charities Act;
- carry out investigations in accordance with the Charities Act;
- encourage and facilitate the better administration and management of charitable organisations by the provision of information or advice, including in particular by way of issuing (or, as it considers appropriate, approving) guidelines, codes of conduct, and model constitutional documents;
- carry on such activities or publish such information (including statistical information) concerning charitable organisations and charitable trusts as it considers appropriate; and
- Provide information (including statistical information) or advice, or make proposals, to the Minister on matters relating to the functions of the Charities Regulator.
General description of the classes of records held by the Charities Regulator
Compliance and Enforcement unit
The key functions of the Compliance and Enforcement Unit are as follows:
- To promote compliance by charity trustees with their duties in the control and management of charities;
- To ensure and monitor compliance by charitable organisations with the Charities Acts;
- To carry out investigations in accordance with the Charities Acts;
- To encourage and facilitate the better administration and management of charitable organisations by the provision of information or advice.
The section engages with the public and relies on a good relationship with the public to carry out its work.
Under Statutory Instrument No.367 of 2020, the Chief Executive of the Charities Regulator has been specified as a ‘prescribed person’ for the purpose of receiving disclosures of relevant wrongdoings in respect of all matters relating to the regulation of charities pursuant to the Charities Act 2009. See the Protected Disclosures page on the website for further information.
Registration and Reporting unit
The key functions of the Registration and Reporting Unit are as follows:
- To maintain and further develop an effective registration system for charities
- To register charities according to the registration policy and process
- To establish and maintain an effective reporting system for charities
- To provide support and guidance to organisations applying or considering applying for registration
- To maintain the Register of Charities
Charity Services unit
The Charity Services Unit is responsible for managing requests for the consent or direction of the Charities Regulator in relation to practical matters which affect how charities deal with their property, assets, internal governance or continue to provide services to their beneficiaries.
Applications may be made by charities and other persons under the Charities Acts 1961 and 1973, as amended. The Charity Services Unit incorporates the functions previously vested in the Commissioners of Charitable Donations and Bequests for Ireland (CCDB), which were transferred to the Charities Regulator further to section 82 of the Charities Act 2009, following the dissolution of the CCDB pursuant to Part 6 of the Charities Act 2009.The range of applications which can be made to the Charity Services Unit includes:
- The appointment of New Charity Trustees – section 43 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended;
- The authorisation of disposition of lands held upon charitable trusts – sections 34 and 37 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended:
- Consent to a Sale of Charity Property for Full Value
- Consent to a Transfer/ Sale of Charity Property between Charities for less than Full Value
- Consent to a Lease of Charity Property
- Consent to a Surrender of a Lease of Charity Property
- Consent to a Mortgage of Charity Property
- Consent to an Exchange of Charity Property
- Settling a Cy-Près Scheme where the original objects of a charity, charitable bequest or charitable trust fail – Section 29 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended;
- Giving an Opinion or Advice in relation to the administration, property of a charity under the Authority’s Seal – Section 21 of the Charities Act 1961;
- Sanctioning a Compromise in relation to a claim made by or against a charity – section 22 of the Charities Act 1961;
- Authorising the merger of one charity with another or transfer of assets to another charity, where there are limitations (or no power to do so) in the charities’ governing documents or limitations in the terms of the original trusts on which their charity assets are held;
- Authorising the institution of legal proceedings in a charity matter – section 25 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended;
- Notification of litigation / legal proceedings involving a charity – section 53 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended;
- Assisting with the examination of Summary ‘PAS3’ Forms received from the Probate Office supplying details of all charitable bequests – section 52 of the Charities Act 1961, as amended.
Corporate Affairs unit
Corporate Affairs is an internal support service, responsible primarily for ensuring compliance with a number of governance obligations and improving corporate policies, procedures and outcomes. It is also responsible for organising, overseeing the effective use of, and resolving any resourcing difficulties in order that the Charities Regulator achieves its strategic objectives:
Corporate Affairs oversees:
- Human Resources;
- ICT Resources;
- Freedom of Information requests;
- Secretarial Support for the Authority;
- Quality Management System (QMS); and
- Office Accommodation.
The unit is also responsible for supporting the Charities Regulator’s overall information governance arrangements.
The Finance Unit provides a financial framework and control system for the Charities Regulator in accordance with government financial and statutory requirements:
- Financial Resources;
- Processing Payments;
- Asset Management; and
- Annual Budget.
In addition, the Finance unit also deals with the Common Invest Fund (CIF) which entrusts assets of various charities to the Charities Regulator in accordance with Section 83 of the Charities Act 2009.
Communications and Stakeholder Engagement
The Communications and Stakeholder Engagement Unit is responsible primarily for engaging with the public on the Charities Regulator’s behalf. This includes:
- Handling media queries and press releases;
- Managing website and social media content; and
- Organising public consultation events.
In addition, they handle interactions between the Charities Regulator and TDs, Ministers and other stakeholders, and handle the translation of material and correspondence into Irish.