Restricted, Unrestricted and Designated Funds

Picture1Unrestricted general funds can be spent at the discretion of the trustees to further any charitable purpose of the charity. This means that these funds can be spent in their own right, or can be added to a restricted fund which does not have enough money to cover its expenditure

Designated funds are still unrestricted, but have been set aside by the trustees for a particular future project or commitment.  The designation is for administrative purposes only and carries no legal authority

Restricted funds are completely different.  Restricted funds refer to funds held under ‘specific trusts’, which is that they are held for a specific charitable purpose.  The restriction carries the weight of the law and so restricted funds can only be lawfully spent on the specific charitable purpose for which they were provided.  As with designated funds, there is no requirement for restricted funds to be held in a separate bank account