How to make changes to your charity's governing document (CC36)

Find out how to make changes to your charity's governing document.

Applies to England and Wales



This guidance explains how charities can make changes to their governing document. For example, the charity’s purposes or rules on holding meetings.

There is separate guidance for:

  • charitable companies
  • Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIO)
  • trusts and unincorporated associations

Read the guidance that applies to your type of charity. This will help you to follow the correct rules.

If you do not know what your charity’s type is, check your governing document.

Your governing document may be a:

  • Memorandum and Articles of Association (if a charitable company)
  • constitution (if a CIO)
  • trust deed, conveyance, scheme or will (if a trust)
  • constitution, rules or scheme (if an unincorporated association)

Read this guidance for information about:

  • the powers you can use to make changes
  • changes that need the Commission’s authority and how to apply for authority
  • how to make changes
  • who to tell about changes
  • when changes take effect

If you are an exempt charity, contact your principal regulator.

Published 5 August 2011
Last updated 7 March 2024 + show all updates
  1. Guidance updated to reflect changes introduced by the Charities Act 2022.

  2. Added translation