All registered charities must comply with their legal obligations, including submitting an Annual Information Statement each year.

Who needs to submit an Annual Information Statement?

Charities registered with the ACNC must submit an Annual Information Statement every reporting period (unless they have an exception). You can check if your charity is registered by searching for it on the ACNC Charity Register.

If your charity is no longer operating or has been wound up, you should request that your charity's registration with the ACNC be revoked using Form 5A: Application to revoke charity registration.

Once your charity's registration is revoked, it will no longer receive Commonwealth charity tax concessions or other benefits as a registered charity. The revocation will also be noted on your charity's entry on the Charity Register.

Charities exempt from submitting part or all of their Annual Information Statement

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations

Charities regulated by the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporations (ORIC) do not need to submit an Annual Information Statement and financial report.

Read more about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander corporations.

Basic Religious Charities

Basic Religious Charities do not need to:

  • answer the financial information questions in the Annual Information Statement
  • submit annual financial reports to us.

However they still need to report to us annually. Read about Basic religious charities.

Non-government schools

Non-government schools can participate in transitional streamlined reporting arrangements with the ACNC.

Read more about these arrangements with non-government schools.

What we ask for in the Annual Information Statement

The Annual Information Statement includes questions about your charity, its activities, basic financial information and other questions to help us understand the charity sector and reduce the sector’s overall reporting burden. Some questions are mandatory, others are optional.

Each year, medium and large charities are also required to submit a financial report. Small charities can choose to submit a financial report, but it is not compulsory.

Most charities already collect the information we ask for in the Annual Information Statement; often for their members, funders, board or to include in their annual reports.

Why charities have to complete an Annual Information Statement

The Annual Information Statement supports our work to:

  • maintain, protect and enhance public trust and confidence in the sector through increased accountability and transparency
  • promote the reduction of unnecessary regulatory obligations on the charity sector.

These are two of the three objects contained in the ACNC Act.

We use responses to Annual Information Statement questions in different ways. Once we receive your charity’s responses, we:

  • publish the information - except some personal information - on the ACNC Register (unless you successfully apply to have that information withheld)
  • use the information to administer the ACNC Act, including assessing your charity's entitlement to registration, and its compliance with the Act
  • may share that information with other authorised Australian government agencies through the Charity Passport, removing the need for those agencies to ask you for the same information
  • share it with researchers through data.gov.au, contributing to charity sector transparency
  • analyse it so we can provide simple financial and other information to the charity sector, donors, volunteers and the public. This helps build greater understanding of the sector
  • monitor trends in the sector by comparing information over reporting periods.

The information on the Charity Register is accessible to the public. But if your charity believes there are valid reasons for the ACNC not to publish some of the information it submitted through the Annual Information Statement, you can apply to have information withheld from the Register.

Not all information can be withheld, only information that fits within certain criteria. This includes information that may be commercially sensitive, or may cause harm if published. We may still publish this information if the public interest in doing so is greater than the risk.

You can apply to withhold information in the Charity Portal. Find out more about how we decide what information to withhold.

The usual ACNC reporting period is a standard financial year – 1 July to 30 June. If your charity wants to use a different reporting period you must apply for a Substituted Accounting Period.

Read more about Annual Information Statement due dates.

Registration within three months of the end of your reporting period

We only requires an Annual Information Statement from the period that a charity registers with the ACNC. This means the date on which the ACNC registered your charity rather than any earlier date that your charity may have been entitled to registration.

If we register your charity within three months of the end of its reporting period, you do not need to submit an Annual Information Statement (and financial report if relevant) for that period.

For the following reporting period, all you need to do is submit an AIS (and financial report if relevant) for the period from the date of registration until end of that reporting period.

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Example: If the end of your reporting period is 30 June, and the ACNC registers your charity on 5 April, then you may not need to report until the end of the following reporting period. However you may voluntarily submit an AIS for that period, and then report for a standard reporting period the following year.

There is more information about part-year Annual Information Statements in the Commissioner’s Policy Statement: Annual Information Statements.

If you want your charities to report to the ACNC as part of a group, you must first apply to the ACNC for group reporting.

Bulk lodgement is the process that allows you to submit ten or more Annual Information Statement on behalf of multiple registered charities on a single form. Bulk lodgement is commonly used by corporate trustees administrating multiple trusts, or by denomination administration offices overseeing multiple religious charities.

Read more about group reporting and bulk lodgement.

Log into the Charity Portal and to submit your charity's Annual Information Statement.

Note: We will not verify your answers before they are published on the Charity Register.

After you submit

Information provided in your Annual Information Statement will be published on the Charity Register (unless you successfully apply to withhold some of that information).

You will receive a confirmation email with a link to a PDF copy of your completed Annual Information Statement. This email will be sent to your charity’s Address For Service email, as well as the email provided in the declaration (if different).

If you identify a material error in an Annual Information Statement or annual financial report you have submitted, you must contact us and arrange for it to be corrected.

Call us on 13 ACNC (13 22 62) or email advice@acnc.gov.au to let us know that you need to re-submit with corrected information.

For small charities, this statement or report is due within 60 days of you identifying the error. For medium and large charities, the statement or report is due within 28 days of you identifying the error.