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Charity Commission grants accounts extension to 90% of charities that ask

17 May 2021 News

The Charity Commission has granted an extension to 90% of charities that have asked to delay submitting their annual accounts during the pandemic.

There are currently 5,000 charities out of the 169,000 on the Commission's register with an active charity accounts extension in place.

Last year the Commission said it would grant extensions where charities are struggling to meet the deadline due to the pandemic.  

A Charity Commission spokesperson said the extension policy is “in line with our flexible and supportive approach to regulation during the pandemic”.

It will grant an extension where requested unless a charity has not submitted its accounts for the previous year or years, or was overdue on 1 March 2020. 

This policy is being kept under review whilst the pandemic persists, and the Commission has previously recommended that if a charity has all the information available then it should still submit its documents on time.

The spokesperson added: “We are currently reviewing our extensions system in line with the government’s easing of Covid-19 restrictions and intend to provide an update on this in due course.”

As of 31 January this year there were 4,012 charities with an extension agreed, which is nearly double the number which had an extension in place in September 2020. 

More than 13,000 charities missed the deadline to submit their financial documents in January, over double the number that missed the deadline last year when around 6,000 were late filing. 

Charities with financial years ending on 31 March needed to file their accounts and annual return with the Commission by 31 January.  

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