The Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission Act 2012 received Royal Assent on 3 December 2012 thereby initiating the commencement of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC).

Initially, the ACNC will only regulate charities. Other not-for-profits that are not charities will not be regulated by the ACNC. This is planned to change over time but the ACNC indicates that this is not likely to be before 2014.

Existing charities that were previously endorsed by the ATO now automatically come under the administration of the ACNC and retain their endorsement. 

All charities should review the ACNC Register which is now in operation. Access to the register and the ACNC website can be made online at www.acnc.gov.au.

Existing Not for Profits that have not yet been endorsed as charities or new entities that seek endorsement as charities will now need to apply to the ACNC for registration.

Charities should now:

  • confirm their status as an endorsed charity
  • review their organisational structure and assess their sorting obligations as either a small, medium or large entity; and 
  • consider their ongoing compliance obligations with the ACNC regulatory framework

All Charities will commence providing the ACNC Annual Information Statements for the 2013 year and the Financial Statements reporting requirements apply from 2014.

The ACNC website provides relevant information regarding the ongoing compliance obligations and it includes a range of ACNC Forms to enable charities to notify changes, and regarding transitional arrangements.

Grant Thornton has specialist not-for-profit advisers who are available to discuss all issues affecting Not for Profit sector entities as they transition to regulation under the ACNC. For more information on how we can help, contact: