Non-profit law cuts fees for charities

| 09/07/2017 | 1 Comment

(CNS Business): The implementation of the new Non-Profit Organisation Law, 2016 on 1 August will pave the way for charities and non-profit entities to avoid government fees. The law is part of a raft of new legislation passed in order to steer Cayman safely through the jurisdiction’s Caribbean Financial Action Task Force evaluation in December.

The non-profit law, which creates a non-profit register, is one of more than 80 pieces of legislation that the former financial services minister, Wayne Panton, brought to the LA to either improve the jurisdiction’s financial sector or tighten up the anti-money laundering/terrorist finance regime.

Once it is implemented, organisations will be required to register if they meet the definition of a non-profit under the law, officials said in a release. This requirement includes companies that currently fall under section 80 of The Companies Law (2016 Revision).

Once registered, a section 80 company will no longer be subject to the conditions imposed by Cabinet under section 80 registration, including registration costs and approval of change costs. Businesses that are not currently designated under section 80 can qualify for the NPO register if they meet the new law’s criteria.

“Once commenced, it will provide several benefits to our community,” said Tara Rivers, the new financial services minister. “It will give the public access to information on all non-profit organisations (NPOs), help them to easily identify entities registered as NPOs, and facilitate law enforcement investigations and enforcement where necessary.”

An NPO is defined as a company or body of persons, whether incorporated or unincorporated, or a trust, that is established, or which identifies itself, as established primarily for the promotion of charitable, philanthropic, religious, cultural, educational, social or fraternal objectives, or other activities or programmes for the public benefit or a section of the public within the Islands or elsewhere. It also covers entities which solicit contributions from the public here or abroad.

NPO registrations will now be streamlined. They are required to occur within a maximum of 30 days, rather than the current, extensive timeframe for section 80 approvals; and changes will be filed by notice to the designated registrar, rather than by the current Cabinet approval process for section 80 companies.

The law was largely designed to meet the Financial Action Task Force Recommendations. These require countries to protect against terrorist financing by knowing the NPOs that are operating in the country and by monitoring the NPOs that represent the largest portion of the industry. Commencing on 1 August, the law will be in place ahead of the CFATF’s December 2017 evaluation of Cayman’s anti money-laundering and counter-financing of terrorism regime.

As part of its public education campaign the following information sessions are being offered by the ministry this month. Additional NPO meeting dates and times will be added as necessary.

For more information, persons are asked to contact Policy Officer Wilbur Welcome at [email protected], in the Department for Financial Services Policy and Legislation.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    No problem with cutting fees. However, will ALL non-profit organisations that solicit money from the public have to publish annual accounts? Not necessarily audited by definitely signed by EVERY member of the board for that year.

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