Objections to decisions

Charities Services and the Charities Registration Board make a range of decisions that can affect charities and individual officers.

These include decisions to register or deregister charities; to publish or restrict details about charities on the public register; to backdate the effective date of registration of charities; or to grant exemptions from compliance with the Charities Act 2005(external link).

If your charity, or an individual, is to be affected by a decision, you will receive a ‘notice of intention to make a decision’ beforehand. This will state the reasons for the intended decision including the legal basis and a summary of facts.

You are entitled to object to the intended decision. The notice will give you a timeframe for this, and instructions on what to do if you want to object. You must do this in writing, giving your reasons.

The grounds for objecting are that the reasons for the intended decision have not been met, or it would not be in the public interest, or both. Only the person or organisation affected can object, and they can only object to the ‘decision maker’. This will be either Charities Services or the Charities Registration Board.

When making an objection, you have the option to appear before the decision maker in support of your written submission. Such a meeting would be held online to make the opportunity accessible to as many people as possible.

The Board or Charities Services will consider the objection, looking at the grounds for the intended decision and whether it is in the public interest. A final decision is then made, and the affected person or organisation is informed.

The affected organisation or person has a further right of appeal to the Taxation and Charities Review Authority(external link), an independent judicial body administered by the Ministry of Justice.

Further information:

Charities Act 2005(external link)

The Act refers to the chief executive. This is the chief executive of the Department of Internal Affairs. In practice, their functions are mostly carried out by Charities Services.

The list of possible decisions are yet to be incorporated into the published Act, so here’s a link to the relevant section of the Charities Amendment Act 2023(external link).