Transparency data

Accounts monitoring review: assessing the standard of charity financial information

Charity Commission report on the reliability of charity financial information in annual returns.

Documents

Accounts monitoring review: assessing the standard of charity financial information

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Details

There are almost 12 million views of the charity register each year. The financial information on our register includes all charities’ income and expenditure. We found that 90% of charities with incomes over £25,000 reported accurate income and expenditure figures in their annual returns. However, for charities below the accounts filing threshold of £25,000, accuracy was barely 60%.

Charities with incomes over £500,000 are also required to provide an analysis of their income, expenditure, balance sheet and charitable funds in their annual returns. More than 95% of the balance sheet and charitable funds analyses provided by our sample were accurate, but the accuracy of their income and expenditure analyses was just over 80%.

Clearly presented accounts that use the required formats are both easier to understand and reduce the risk of input error when completing annual returns. A person who is familiar with the charity’s accounts should complete or check the financial information in the annual return.

Published 25 September 2018