A new system to enable charities to register with HMRC and Charity Commission at the same time has been delayed until April 2017, according to Budget documents released by HMRC.
The two bodies have been working on a joint registration process since early 2013, and it was announced in the 2013 Autumn Statement and it was supposed to launch in 2015. It was then pushed back to 2016.
HMRC’s policy costings document, released alongside the main Budget document, revealed that “this has been delayed to April 2017”.
Under the current registration system, charities must register with the Charity Commission if their income rises above £5,000, unless they are exempt under one of a number of pieces of legislation, or unless they are a member of one of a number of religious denominations, including the Church of England, which are excepted from registration unless their income rises above £100,000.
Charities must also separately register with HM Revenue & Customs if they want to claim gift aid and other tax reliefs. Charities may register with HMRC without being registered with the Charity Commission, and many thousands of charities are.
A Charity Tax Group spokesman said: "We hope that the project will not face further delays as it offers an important opportunity for joined-up regulation and should avoid charities having to duplicate information to HMRC and the Charity Commission."