Factsheet: Trusts and the ACNC

Attention - Important information!Trusts that were recognised (endorsed) as charities by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) to receive charity tax concessions before 3 December 2012 have been automatically registered with the ACNC. Check the ACNC Register to see if your organisation is registered with the ACNC.

Can I register my trust?

There are many different types of trusts. Only trusts supporting a charitable purpose that meet legal meaning of charity and our requirements for registration can register as charities with the ACNC.

Charitable trusts can be set up to support a variety of charitable purposes. For example, a charitable trust may be set up after the death of a person. The person's will states that money must be given to organisations that provide nursing homes for older people. In this case, when applying to register as a charity with the ACNC, the applicant can select 'advancing social and public welfare' as their charitable purpose and 'aged services' as one of their charitable activities.

For more information, read our guidance on charitable purpose carefully before making an application to register as a charity with the ACNC.

My charitable trust is a deductible gift recipient (DGR). Do I need to register to keep my DGR status?

You can check whether your charitable trust is automatically registered with us by checking the ACNC Register. If your charitable fund appears on the ACNC Register, you don't need to do anything.

If your charitable trust is not registered, you may need to apply to register with us so you can continue to receive tax deductible donations. You should check whether your organisation is required to register with the ACNC by following the guidance provided by the ATO. particularly the information on trusts

What obligations do registered charities have to the ACNC?

Charitable trusts registered with the ACNC have ongoing obligations under the ACNC Act. These include to:

  • notify us of certain changes
  • keep records
  • report to us each year
  • comply with governance standards.

Unless we or another government agency tell you otherwise, trusts that have obligations to another government agency (such as notification or reporting) must continue to meet these obligations. The ACNC will be working with other government agencies to reduce unnecessary regulatory obligations over time. Find out more about this work and whether it affects your organisation by reading about charity obligations to other regulators.

Contact the ACNC

Phone: 13 ACNC (13 22 62)
Email: advice@acnc.gov.au
Mail: Advice Services, Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission, GPO Box 5108, Melbourne VIC 3001
Fax: 1300 232 569


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