Appointing An Independent Examiner

AccountingHaving opted for an Independent Examination of their charity’s accounts, the  trustees may find it helpful to draw up a set of questions to ask their proposed examiner to help them check that the person has the skills and experience needed. You should ask:

  • all examiners  to confirm that they have read and understood the Charity Commission’s Directions and guidance
  • professional examiners to provide proof of membership of one of the professional bodies listed here and that they meet that body’s requirements for acting as an independent examiner.  In particular, the examiner is likely to need a practising certificate or licence, although if he or she is not charging a fee to carry out the independent examination this may not be necessary.  This check can be done using each body’s on-line member search tool, or directly if the body does not have this facility
  • non-professional examiners to explain their skills and experience and why this makes them competent to carry out the work.  For example, the examiner may work in a role that involves financial management, such as setting and managing budgets and reviewing financial reports, or that requires knowledge of accounting systems, such as maintaining financial records and internal controls

The trustees’ decision to appoint a person to act as the charity’s examiner should be in writing and recorded in the charity’s minutes.  The examiner should confirm their appointment and this can be done by an exchange of emails.  Professional examiners may issue a letter of engagement, setting out the terms of their appointment including their fee.

The process of finding and appointing an examiner can take time and so should not be left until the trustees’ annual report and accounts are due for filing.

Charity Annual Return Deadlines

DeadlineIt is coming up to the deadline for submitting your annual return if your financial year end was 31 March 2020. 

Your deadline is 31 January 2021

You can submit your annual return online here

You must submit your annual return within 10 months of the end of your financial year, but in these difficult and challenging times, when many people are on furlough, and many activities are closed, you may not feel able to do your return just now.

Charities that are due to submit an annual return imminently, but feel unable to do so, can email to ask for a filing extension.

Please include your charity name and charity registration number when you send your email:  filingextension@charitycommission.gov.uk

Some Sad and Some Happy News

Sad News

CondolencesDerby CAS is very sad to let you know that our President, Ted Cassidy, has died on January 8th 2021

It was Ted who set up and delivered the Community Accountancy Service in Derby between 1991 and 1997

The reputation he gained for our service was vital when we became an independent charity in 2002.

Ted continued to support us in the role as our independent examiner until 2018.

All those in the voluntary sector who remember Ted were as saddened as we were by the news.  They all spoke of their gratitude to Ted for all his help, and remember his great kindness. 

Not only was Ted a great accountant and a great businessman, he was, more importantly, a person who cared for others and did so much to help so many people.

We send our sincere condolences to his wife Una and all the family.  RIP Ted

Some Good News

Sophie Exam SuccessIn all the sadness and gloom it is good to report some really good news.  Sophie Shields has passed her final accountancy examinations!

Sophie joined us as a volunteer in 2014 to gain work experience.  After leaving us, Sophie found employment in the voluntary sector and started taking the qualifications to become a Chartered Certified Accountant, but still found time to come back to help out at Derby CAS!

Many congratulations to Sophie!! 

Winter Newsletter

Winter Newsletter Title Picture

Our winter newsletter has been posted out to those on our mailing list.

Articles in this issue cover

Congratulations to Annabel’s Angels, and how you can win the Andrew Buxton Memorial Award in 2021; Can Your Charity Help With Coronavirus Efforts?; Extension of the Job Retention Scheme (Furlough); People and Skills: The Minute-Taker 

If you have not received your copy, or you wish to be placed on the mailing list please let us know here

Click on this link to read all about it!

Newsletter Winter 2020

Happy New Year!

img078GOOD NEWS TO START 2021!

 We are delighted to let you know that our President, Ted Cassidy, who established Community Accountancy in Derby, is back home with his wife Una after being treated in hospital for COVID-19
 
We at DCAS always remember all he has done for us and the wider Voluntary Sector, and we are sure that you will want to join us in wishing Ted a speedy and full recovery.
 
PLEASE NOTE
The DCAS office is now open again from Monday to Friday, 9:00 am to 5:00 pm
 
If you need to visit in person, you must have booked a  pre-arranged appointment.  This is so that we can keep you and our staff safe and well during these difficult times.
 
You can ring us on 01332 364784, or email us here
 
Wishing you all a very Happy New Year, and stay safe and well everyone.

Holiday Pay During Furlough

Coronavirus-legal-insights-annual-leave-and-furloughAlmost all workers, including zero-hour contracted workers and those on irregular hours contracts, are legally entitled to 5.6 weeks’ paid holiday per year. The exception is those who are genuinely self-employed.

Furloughed employees continue to accrue leave as per their employment contract.

You can only place employees on furlough if coronavirus (COVID-19) is affecting your operations.

You should not place employees on furlough just because:

  • they are going to be on paid leave
  • you usually do less business over the festive period

The employer and employee can agree to vary holiday entitlement as part of the furlough agreement, however almost all workers are entitled to 5.6 weeks of statutory paid annual leave each year which they cannot go below.

Employees can take holiday whilst on furlough. If they are flexibly furloughed then any hours taken as holiday during the claim period should be counted as furloughed hours rather than working hours.

Working Time Regulations (WTR) require holiday pay to be paid at the employee’s normal rate of pay or, where the rate of pay varies, calculated on the basis of the average pay received by the employee in the last 52 working weeks (twelve weeks in Northern Ireland). Therefore, if a furloughed employee takes holiday, the employer should pay their usual holiday pay in accordance with the Working Time Regulations.

Employers will be obliged to pay employees who are on holiday additional amounts over the grant, though will have the flexibility to restrict when leave can be taken if there is a business need and the correct notice is given. This applies for both the furlough period and the recovery period.

If an employee usually works bank holidays then the employer can agree that this is included in the grant payment. If the employee usually takes the bank holiday as leave then the employer would either have to top up their usual holiday pay, or give the employee a day of holiday in lieu.

More details can be found here

Statutory Sick Pay and COVID-19

February | 2020 | Derby Community Accountancy ServiceIf you cannot work because of coronavirus (COVID-19)

You could get SSP if you’re self-isolating because:

You can also get SSP if both of the following apply:

You cannot get SSP if you’re self-isolating after entering or returning to the UK and do not need to self-isolate for any other reason.

You could get SSP for every day you’re off work.

Further details can be found here

Making Decisions At A Charity

Charity Commission on Twitter: "Are you making sound decisions as  #CharityTrustees? Find out how to fulfil your legal responsibilities and  record the decisions you make: https://t.co/4b10voJw8s #ThursdayMotivation # Charity… https://t.co/UBbwRCSX07"Find out about making valid trustee decisions that are in your charity’s best interests by clicking on the numbered links below. 

It is important to follow these steps when making significant or strategic decisions, such as those affecting the charity’s beneficiaries, assets or future direction. The Charity Commission doesn’t expect trustees to follow them step-by-step for minor decisions

  1. Follow the principles
  2. Keep records from the start
  3. Follow your charity’s rules and the law
  4. Get the information you need
  5. Plan your meetings
  6. Manage conflicts of interest
  7. Work together to make decisions
  8. Involve others at your charity

These are the standards that the courts have developed for reviewing decisions made by trustees. Trustees must:

  • act within their powers
  • act in good faith and only in the interests of the charity
  • make sure they are sufficiently informed
  • take account of all relevant factors
  • ignore any irrelevant factors
  • manage conflicts of interest
  • make decisions that are within the range of decisions that a reasonable trustee body could make

They must be able to show how they have followed these principles.

Companies House Stops Postal Reminders for Annual Returns

The confirmation statement explainedCompanies House will no longer send out postal reminders for filing your Annual Return, now known as the Confirmation Statement, as part of their aim to become a fully-digital organisation and all companies should now register for the email reminder service

They say that Companies who have already switched to email reminders from paper are more likely to file their accounts and confirmation statement (annual return) on time, and are less likely to get a penalty for filing their accounts late.

Their email reminder service is free and has many advantages over the paper system. You can:

  • choose up to 4 people to receive a reminder (including an agent)
  • file your document immediately from a link within the reminder
  • receive reminders more conveniently
  • use less paper, contributing to saving the environment

How to register

  1. sign in to the Companies House online filing service
  2. select ‘Get email reminders’ from your company overview screen
  3. click ‘Add an email address’
  4. enter your email address (a maximum of 4 per company)
  5. click the link in the email Companies House sends you to validate your email address
  6. agree to the terms of operation

They will send you an email when you have successfully joined the reminder service.

New users will need to register to use the Companies House online filing service.

You can file your Confirmation Statement here