Is the revised Code mandatory? Are all charities required to apply the revised Code? What is the implication if charities do not apply the Code?
The Code operates on the principle of ‘comply or explain’. The Code applies to all registered charities.
The Code does not apply to Exempt Charities and self-funded grantmakers which do not have IPC status, such as philanthropic foundations funded with private family or institutional money. They are strongly encouraged to refer to the Code as a matter of best practice.
While compliance with the Code is not mandatory, charities to whom the Code applies, are required to submit a GEC on the Charity Portal. In the GEC, charities should:
explain why it cannot comply or can only partially comply with certain Code guidelines;
indicate the steps it plans to take to comply or explain why if it decides not to comply; and
the Board and Management must approve the GEC before submission on the Charity Portal.
Charities, which are not IPCs, have gross annual receipts (or total expenditure, whichever is higher) of less than $50,000 are not required to submit the GEC. However, they are strongly encouraged to adhere to the principles of the Code.
For IPCs, their respective Sector Administrators (SAs) would consider the IPC’s extent of Code compliance, and the reasons for partial compliance and/or non-compliance, when assessing an IPC’s application to extend its IPC status, as well as the length of IPC extension.