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Registered charities are required to keep financial and operational records. This page provides examples of the types of records a charity may need to keep.

See our guidance for more information about charity record-keeping.

Financial records

A financial record explains your charity’s financial activities (transactions), and financial position and performance.

Examples of financial records include:

  • general account books – including general journal and general and subsidiary ledgers
  • cash book records – including receipts and payments
  • banking records – including bank and credit card statements, deposit books, cheque butts and bank reconciliations
  • creditors’ records – including creditors ledger, invoices and paid bills
  • debtors’ records – including debtors ledger, invoices and receipts
  • details of any contracts – including service agreements, office equipment leases, property rental agreements
  • details of any grant payments and acquittals
  • tax invoices and other relevant tax records
  • stock records
  • records of expenses – for example, motor vehicle expenses
  • records of payments relating to employees – including ‘pay as you go’ (PAYG) withholding, superannuation and fringe benefits provided
  • assets list or register
  • emails, letters and other communication about finance for example, an email about repaying unspent grant funds.

Operational records

An operational record is any information about your charity’s activities that shows it complies with the ACNC Act and tax law, and that it continues to be a charity or continues to be entitled to be registered as a particular subtype, for example, as a Public Benevolent Institution (PBI).

Some examples of basic operational records include:

  • governing documents – such as a constitution, rules or trust deed
  • meeting minutes
  • operating policies and procedures
  • annual reports, donor reports or other reports – for example, on results of programs, projects or services
  • strategic plans and program plans
  • monitoring and evaluation reports
  • contracts and agreements – including funding and other agreements
  • memoranda of understanding
  • media releases – such as those released by your charity, and discussing its activities
  • charity promotional materials – including pamphlets, posters
  • any other records to show your charity is working towards its charitable purpose – this includes electronic, written or multimedia records, for example a short film about your charity’s project.