Following the lapse of the emergency measures introduced by the Corporate Insolvency and Governance Act 2020, the Charity Commission has issued updated guidance explaining their approach to charities who are experiencing difficulties holding face to face meetings as a result of the ongoing Coronavirus restrictions.
The latest update from the Charity Commission is explained below, and the full guidance can be found on the following link.
Even as lockdown restrictions ease across the country, coronavirus continues to have a major impact on charity events with trustees still needing to consider how, and if, they can hold meetings.
The first step is for trustees to check if their charity’s governing document allows them to hold meetings online or by telephone, and if it does not it may need to be amended to allow for meetings to be held in this way.
However, for some charities virtual meetings are not a viable solution, and neither are socially distanced face-to-face meetings. In instances like these trustees may consider they have no choice but to cancel or postpone their meetings and AGMs. If this is the agreed decision then you should make sure to follow any rules in your charity’s governing document that allow for postponement, adjournment, or cancellation. If there are no such rules, but you decide that this is still the best course of action for your charity in the current circumstances, you should record the reasons for this decision to demonstrate good governance of your charity. This is also particularly important if it is not possible to hold your AGM which may make it difficult for you to finalise your annual reports and accounts.
Remember, reviewing your governing documents is vital to ensure you are taking the correct steps for your charity, and recording actions taken to demonstrate good governance.
For any further advice or support on your governing documents, governance or holding meetings, please contact our dedicated charities team.