Mergers and closures

Any charity, large or small, can find itself in circumstances where it may need to merge with a similar organisation, or to close. 

It is important that charity trustees regularly review their charity’s effectiveness and how the charity is meeting the needs of beneficiaries.  Some charities may identify that a merger would be a helpful way of meeting those needs more effectively.  This may result in the closure of one or more charities as they merge into another.  Other charities may close as a result of unrelated factors, including loss of funds or a lack of members.

The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland (the Commission) has produced guidance setting out the charity law requirements where a charity is considering a merger or facing closure. It also explains the processes that charities should use to notify the Commission of a merger of any charity or, where the charity is registered with the Commission, its closure.

Notification of a charity merger is required where the charities involved wish to have the details of the merger entered onto the online register of mergers.  Notification is compulsory where there is a vesting declaration.  Additionally, where a charity is registered with the Commission, notification may be required in order to keep the details held on the register of charities up to date.  Notification of a charity merger can involve any charity, whether it is registered with the Commission or not. 

Notifying the Commission of a closure is only relevant for registered charities.  Registered charities must notify the Commission of a closure.  It is best practice for organisations on the deemed list of charities to notify the Commission of a closure, as this will help to ensure that our records are kept up to date.

Notifying the Commission of a charity merger to be placed on the register of mergers  

Use the form below to notify the Commission of a merger so that it can be entered onto the online register of mergers. 

The merger process is complex and may require input from the Commission prior to notification.  For example, a scheme may be required to transfer property or assets. It may be necessary to refer to other sections of the Commission’s website for guidance.  

Notifying the Commission of the closure of a registered charity

Use the form below to notify the Commission of the closure of a registered charity.

In order to close, a charity may require input from the Commission.  For example, a scheme may be required to transfer any remaining property or assets.  It may be necessary to refer to other sections of the Commission’s website for guidance. 

 

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