8 Nov 2018
The Charity Commission has updated its guidance on reporting serious incidents in charities.
It's important to be aware that the Commission requires
charities to report serious incidents and provide "prompt, full and
frank disclosure". When reporting an incident, you should tell the
Commission what has happened and how you are dealing with it.
This is because when something serious happens, it's the
Commission's role to ensure that the trustees comply with their
legal duties and the charity manages the incident responsibly.
The updated guidance aims to provide more clarity in relation to
what should be reported.
A serious incident is an adverse event, whether actual or
alleged, which results in or risks significant:
- harm to your charity's beneficiaries, staff, volunteers or
others who come into contact with your charity through its work
(who are collectively referred to throughout this guidance as
people who come into contact with your charity through its
- loss of your charity's money or assets
- damage to your charity's property
- harm to your charity's work or reputation
For the purposes of this guidance, "significant" means
significant in the context of your charity, taking account of its
staff, operations, finances and/or reputation.
The guidance covers the following areas:
- Who should report
- Why you should tell the Commission
- What to report
The guidance also provides more detail on different kinds of
serious incident from criminal activity, to safeguarding, financial
issues, terrorism and other kinds of significant incidents.
We would recommend that charity trustees and senior staff
familiarise themselves with the Commission's guidance on
reporting serious incidents to ensure that they know what to do
if something goes wrong.