Bates Wells Briefing for Charities & Social Enterprises | 16 January

Bates Wells highlights

Charities, Social Enterprise

For English charities registered in Scotland – the Scottish Government has launched a consultation into charity law in Scotland.

We are hosting a seminar in February to help organisations who may be finding managing security incidents in compliance with the new GDPR responsibilities burdensome and confusing. We’ll be taking a look at what the law requires and what the data protection authorities expect. Find out more and book your place here.

At a glance

New legislation introduced by the government from 9 January makes cold calls about pensions illegal in some circumstances.

More than 6,000 “uniformed” group places are being created for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds across England.

Funding has been announced to train 900 new children’s social workers.

The government has published “The NHS Long Term Plan”.

Charity Commission

New inquiries

The commission has announced that it has opened an inquiry into Jalalabad Association (1012090) a charity which was previously included in the “double defaulters” class inquiry, as it had failed to file accounts for five consecutive financial years. Although the charity filed a set of accounts for one of the years concerned, it is in continuing default for the other four financial years, so the commission has opened a separate inquiry into potential mismanagement in the administration of the charity.

The commission has also announced that it has opened an inquiry into CAWRM Ltd (known as Jerusalem Merit, 1178193) a charity to relieve poverty and financial hardship in particular, but not exclusively, amongst refugees in the Middle East. The inquiry was opened following a compliance visit to the charity from the commission, and the regulatory concerns to be investigated include: the charity’s funds having been held in the personal bank account of an individual linked to the charity, at a time during which the individual was under police investigation for terrorist financing offences; charitable funds being put at risk by the couriering of significant amounts of cash out of the UK to the Middle East; unauthorised employment and remuneration of a trustee and unexplained large payments to a limited company whose sole director is the individual linked to the charity.


Voluntary sector

Sir Stuart Etherington of NCVO has written this blog about what comes after Brexit.

Government guidance for businesses

The government has published an update on steps taken by BEIS to prepare for Brexit including this guidance for businesses:

“If you run a business you can access information on a range of measures you may need to take in order to prepare, including the guidance available in the event of no deal. These notices will be regularly updated with the latest information. Government has launched the business readiness website which includes a tool to enable you to find out:

  • what your business will need to do to prepare for the UK leaving the EU
  • what’s changing in your industry
  • information on specific rules and regulations.”

Data protection

ICO fine for Cambridge Analytica

SCL Elections Ltd, also known as Cambridge Analytica, has been fined £15,000 for failing to comply with an enforcement notice issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). The criminal prosecution related to the company’s failure to respond to an enforcement notice issued in May 2018, which ordered the company to respond in full to a subject access request submitted by Professor David Carroll, a US-based academic. As well as the fine, the court also ordered the company to pay £6,000 costs and a victim surcharge of £170.

Youth and children’s services

More than 6,000 “uniformed” group places are being created for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds across England. They include Girlguiding and the Scouts.

Funding has been announced to train 900 new children’s social workers.



Schools Minister Nick Gibb has announced schools are to receive a new model music curriculum created by an independent panel of experts. And in addition a £1.33million funding boost is being given to the Department for Education’s music education hubs, which help young people learn to play an instrument in whole classes.

Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi has announced that two new specialist free schools will be built in Essex and Hounslow, helping to meet the local need for school places for children with some of the most complex social, emotional and mental health needs.

School Standards Minister Nick Gibb has also announced the University of York as England’s first modern foreign languages centre for excellence. The centre, which will be known as the Centre for Excellence for Languages Pedagogy, will work with schools to help more young people learn foreign languages.


The government has published “The NHS Long Term Plan” which sets out how the £20.5 billion budget settlement for the NHS, announced by the Prime Minister in summer 2018, will be spent over the next 5 years. See here for a summary of key priorities.

Social finance

Cliff Prior (chief executive officer, Big Society Capital (BSC)), writing for BSC’s blog, shares his thoughts on what is in store for social impact investment in 2019. Social enterprises and charities are continuing to deal with a growing demand for their services, austerity and uncertainty. However, social impact investment is one tool that can be used to boost the work of sector participants.

In this press release, the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy has unveiled plans for government to consider new laws to protect consumers who have already paid for products but have not received them when businesses go bust. These reforms are a part of the government’s strategy to ensure markets work in the interests of consumers.

International development

BOND reports at the end of last year the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) released the final figures for total Official Development Assistance (ODA) by Development Assistance Committee (DAC) members. These figures show that total net ODA in real terms fell by US$213 million, from US$144.9bn to US$144.7bn (the first real terms reduction since 2012).

Culture and creative

See above under Education, Schools.


The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has published a Resources and Waste Strategy for England. The Strategy sets out detailed plans for reforming several areas of waste regulation in the UK. The main focus of the Strategy is on:

  • Broadening existing producer responsibility regimes to a wider concept of extended producer responsibility. Packaging waste is a priority.
  • Developing extended producer responsibility regimes for new waste streams, particularly textiles and four other waste streams.
  • Moving towards a circular economy by supporting and strengthening options for re-use, re-manufacture, repair and recycling.


The Committee on Advertising Practice has announced a new rule providing that “[Advertisements] must not include gender stereotypes that are likely to cause harm, or serious or widespread offence”. To help advertisers, CAP has published an accompanying guidance that gives examples of scenarios that are likely to breach the new rule including for example adverts depicting gender-stereotypical roles, for example the scenario of a man with his feet up and family members making a mess while the woman tidies up.

Company law

The Government has announced a new-ish service to jointly register new companies with Companies House and HMRC. The joint service allows the set up of a limited company and registration for Corporation Tax and Pay As You Earn (PAYE) tax. Unfortunately, this will not be available for new charitable companies.


The Scottish Government has launched a consultation into charity law in Scotland. Further information, including which changes OSCR has requested, has also been published on OSCR’s website. The consultation seeks views on potential improvements to the statutory charity regulation framework in Scotland, given the passage of time since the Charities and Trustee Investment (Scotland) Act 2005 was passed and the changing environment that charities are now operating in, and also in light of proposals put forward by OSCR. The proposals include broadening OSCR’s powers and extending the disqualification criteria for charity trustees by bringing them into line with the criteria in England and Wales. The PSL team will review the documents and provide further information on the proposals next week. The consultation will close on 1 April; we are expecting the CLA to put out a call for Working Party members shortly.

OSCR has issued a news story about appointing the right auditor or independent examiner for your charity.

Northern Ireland

CCNI has published notice of its intention to remove a charity trustee from the charity Morning Star House (101035).

This information is necessarily of a general nature and doesn’t constitute legal advice. This is not a substitute for formal legal advice, given in the context of full information under an engagement with Bates Wells.

All content on this page is correct as of January 16, 2019.