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  • Writer's pictureSara White

Charity Commission digital filing service goes live

Updated: Mar 21

Charities will have to file annual returns via the Charity Commission’s new digital account service as legacy system is closed

Sara White, Editor, Accountancy Daily

The newly launched My Charity Commission Account service, which most charities have now been invited to sign up for, was launched on 31 July and is designed to improve accessibility and reporting processes for charities.

This means that the current digital filing services will be switched off with immediate effect and all returns will have to be filed via the individual charity’s dedicated account.

The regulator has made plans for any disruption that trustees may experience during the transition, including making additional staff available in its contact centre.

The Charity Commission said that ‘this is a significant change’ and has described the move to My Charity Commission Account as charities’ ‘front door’ into the Commission, where they will have to submit any remaining annual returns for 2022 and all annual returns for 2023 onwards, and engage with the regulator’s wider digital services.

‘From the launch of My Charity Commission Account, charities will no longer be able to file annual returns through the existing system,’ the Charity Commission confirmed.

‘From 31 July, all online services will be accessible with a My Charity Commission Account log-in.’

Those charities that did not submit their annual return by the deadline will have to start again via My Charity Commission Account after the change over.

The Annual Return for 2023 will be available from late August via My Charity Commission Account.

The rollout of the new service began with charities’ named contacts, ensuring that all charities are able to access the Commission’s digital services, including to file their annual returns.

In the months ahead, the service will be extended to all individual trustees. This will facilitate a more direct relationship between the regulator and trustees, helping to ensure they are supported in their role and equipped to run their charities well.

Nick Baker, the Commission’s chief operating officer said: ‘There is a lot of work still for us to do before we meet our long term ambition for a new, direct form of online communication between the Commission and each and every charity trustee.

‘But the end of this month marks an important milestone in the development of My Charity Commission Account, enabling charities to access the new service for the first time. I call on all charities to act quickly when they receive an onboarding invitation from the Commission.

‘Those charities that have not yet been invited to sign up for an account will hear from the Commission once the service is live. The Commission has prepared guidance to help contacts set up their My Charity Commission Account.’

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