ACNC powers to investigate
We have the power to investigate and we will be particularly concerned if it is alleged that a charity:
- is not entitled to be registered as a charity or as a specific subtype (subtypes must match the charity’s purpose)
- has not met ACNC requirements to keep appropriate records
- has not met ACNC requirements to provide accurate information, such as financial information or details of its Responsible Persons (members of its board or committee, or trustee)
- has used funds or assets for non-charitable purposes, such as for the private benefit of its members, or these have been stolen
- has not been accountable and transparent to its members (it may have failed to hold an annual general meeting or similar)
- has been involved with fraud or criminal activity (the person raising the concern will be asked if they have contacted the police)
- has failed to ensure that its responsible persons (committee or board members, or trustees) are suitable and not disqualified
- has failed to ensure its responsible people have complied with their duty to act in good faith, with a reasonable degree of care and diligence, in the charity’s best interests and pursuing its purpose
- has failed to ensure its responsible people have complied with the duty to disclose perceived or actual conflicts of interest and not to misuse their position or any information obtained in the performance of their duties.
The ACNC will assess the level of risk when deciding what action to take.
When the ACNC will act
Generally, we will only act on concerns where:
- there is a serious risk to public trust and confidence in the sector, AND
- they relate to a charity's compliance with requirements of the ACNC Act.