How do I set up a charity in Jersey?
Jersey doesn't have a charities law or a charities commission so Jersey charities are not registered with any regulator.
The Jersey Law Commission is currently reviewing the Charities Law.
The following article is designed to give general guidelines to anyone who is considering setting up a charity in Jersey. You may wish to seek legal advice or contact the Association for further guidance.
- There is no legal necessity to register, ie 'Incorporate' a charity in Jersey, except that a charity cannot inherit property, or land unless it has been formally constituted, incorporated and approved by the Attorney General's office and passed through the Royal Court for registration.
To achieve this, see paragraph 6.
- To set up a charity it is important to establish the aims and objectives of the group, and formalise the appointment and responsibilities of the officers of the group. This is normally achieved by writing a constitution and it is quite useful to use the constitution of an existing charity as guide. Sample constitutions are available on this website. A lawyer can be employed to write a constitution or a Trust Deed and generally advise a charity in this respect.
- Evidence of formation of the group/organisation (minutes/constitution) should be forwarded to the Comptroller of Income Tax together with a letter requesting tax exemption.
- Once tax exemption is granted, a return must be made to the Jersey Financial Services Commission under the NPO (Jersey) Law 2008. Read more here
- Banking facilities need to be established and most banks will require a mandate with a minimum of two signatories, usually the Chairman or President and Treasurer. Some banks offer free banking to charities and bank fees should be negotiated at the start.
- A charity wishing to be incorporated by the Royal Court should contact a lawyer to apply to the Judicial Greffier. The charity would need to have a constitution drawn up and some evidence of how it plans to operate. Approval is necessary from the Attorney General's office, and there is a registration fee and of course the lawyer's fee.
- Joining the Association of Jersey Charities offers benefits in terms of grants available from Lottery funds. A diary of events throughout the year is maintained to help avoid a clash of large fundraising events on the same day, free advertising for fundraising events weekly in the Jersey Evening Post and much more.
Contact the Administrator of the Association for further information.