Internal disputes within a charity are disagreements between individuals or groups about the charity's activities, decisions or policies. They may be a difference of opinion between a volunteer and the board about how a charity is run, or a disagreement between board members about a decision.

Unfortunately, internal disputes can threaten a charity's good governance and the effectiveness of its operations - especially if they are left unresolved or unaddressed.

The ACNC recommends a number of steps in managing internal disputes.

alert icon The ACNC will not directly intervene or mediate to resolve internal disputes. We will only get involved in a charity's dispute if there is a serious risk to public trust and confidence. For example, if the dispute has the potential to result in a breach of the charity's obligations to the ACNC.

For more information about the ACNC's approach to dealing with internal disputes, see Commissioner's Policy Statement (2017/01): ACNC’s approach to internal disputes within charities. We recommend you seek legal advice if your dispute raises any legal questions, especially if you have to go to court.