Setting up a Charity or Not-for-Profit Organisation

When setting up a charity or other not-for-profit organisation, there are many questions you’ll need to consider:

·         What do we want to do/achieve?

·         How do we want to do it?

·         Why are we doing this?

·         Is what we want to do unique or can it be achieved through an existing organisation?

·         What structure should we use? Company, trust, association or be unincorporated?

·         What registrations and endorsements must we obtain? 

·     What concessions can we get?

Some of these are legal questions we can assist with, some are matters which you will need to consider to be able to instruct us properly. To help you with these issues we have resources likewhat is a charity? which can be helpful to read before our first meeting. 

Once these questions are considered, what is the process involved in establishing the organisation?  The following represent the general steps required for a charity seeking registration with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC) and endorsement with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO):

1.       Establish the structure which is to operate as a charity. 

2.       Obtain an Australian Business Number (ABN). 

3.       Apply for registration as a charity with the ACNC. 

4.       Apply for endorsement as an income tax exempt charity with the ATO. 

5.       Apply for endorsement as a deductible gift recipient with the ATO (if applicable). 

6.       Apply for fundraising licences in the various states in which you wish to operate (if required). 

7.       Seek and obtain any relevant exemptions and concessions to which the charity may be entitled.  This may include stamp duty exemptions/concessions/land tax exemptions or rates concessions depending upon the relevant jurisdiction. 

If you are seeking to operate as a non-charitable not-for-profit, some of these steps may not be applicable.  It will depend on what you are seeking to achieve and how it can be achieved. 

Regardless of whether you are seeking to establish a charity or other category of not-for-profit, Neumann & Turnour Lawyers are able to assist in working through these steps and the various issues which arise in this process.  

What is a charity, not-for-profit or DGR?
What structure should I use?
Governing documentation
Requirements of the board, committee members, trustees and responsible persons
Registration with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC)
Endorsement with the Australian Taxation Office

Please contact our office to discuss how we might be able to best assist you. Ph. (07) 3837 3600

Make an appointment with one of our highly experienced Lawyers today.