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Prevention of unauthorised fundraising

Published: 21/02/2018
Updated: 21/02/2018

A benevolent body can take steps to stop unauthorised fundraising if the person carrying out the fundraising: 

  • is using fundraising methods that benevolent body objects to
  • is not a fit and proper person to raise funds for the benevolent body
  • is engaged in a particular promotion or venture that the benevolent body does not want to be associated with. 

Trustee duty

What can the benevolent body do?

If the benevolent body wants to stop unauthorised fundraising for any of these reasons it must serve a notice on the person requesting that he/she immediately stops fundraising on their behalf. The notice must also state that, if the person fails to comply with the request, an interdict will be sought.

After 28 days, the body may apply for an interdict (court order) if the person continues fundraising on its behalf.

If the person initially complies with the request to stop but then starts fundraising for the body within 12 months of the original request being made, the body may apply for an interdict without a further notice being served.

OSCR may also exercise its powers under section 31 of the 2005 Act in respect of funds raised by a person purporting to act on behalf of a charity. These powers allow OSCR to control transactions made in relation to these funds or to direct the fundraiser to pay the funds to the charity within a set period of time.

Breach of the regulations and fundraising agreements

A person or organisation that contravenes any of the 2009 Regulations may be guilty of a criminal offence and liable, on conviction, to a fine. Where the organisation is a charity any breach by charity trustees may also be treated as misconduct under the 2005 Act.

It is unlawful for an organisation or promoter to fundraise if the Court has prohibited them from doing so, or if the benevolent body has withdrawn from the fundraising agreement.

Trustee duty
Charity trustees must take action in the interests of the charity if they become aware of unauthorised fundraising carried out in their name or on their behalf.