Reporting our regulatory work
We report the outcome of formal inquiries into charities to inform you about our role as regulator, about the inquiry process and about the action that we have taken in a particular inquiry. They also raise awareness about particular issues and we hope they widen the impact of our involvement in individual cases.
About inquiry reports
The Charity Commission's policy is to report the outcome of formal inquiries by publishing a statement of results on this section of the website. Charity law allows us to do this. We give trustees and others affected by the publication of the inquiry report the opportunity to comment on the factual accuracy of the report before publishing it here.
Others affected by the publication of an inquiry report are usually only those individuals named in the report. Where another regulator has been, or is involved, they are also given the opportunity to comment. The initial complainant, or member of the public, would not be entitled to comment on the report.
Our reports inform you about our role as regulator, about the inquiry process and about the action that we have taken in a particular inquiry. They also raise awareness about particular issues and we hope they widen the impact of our involvement in individual cases.
The reports we publish are statements of the results of an inquiry under section 50 of the Charities Act 2011. The Commission also has the discretion to publish more detailed reports in exceptional circumstances due to the complexity of the issues under investigation or where the report may be used in legal proceedings.
How to get copies of inquiry reports
Inquiry reports published in the last six months can be seen below. After six months, reports are transferred into our archive.
Archive of inquiry reports Statements of the results of inquiries into charities opened under section 50 of the Charities Act 2011.
We can send you a copy of any archived report - please contact us.
We believe that it is proportionate not to hold reports of investigations on the website indefinitely when charities have addressed the issues raised, or where personnel concerned or other circumstances have changed.
Members of the public can still access previous reports, but reports are not held on the website indefinitely where it may damage a charity's reputation for years to come.
Inquiries we do not report
Our intention is to report the outcome of every formal inquiry. However, there will be a small number of exceptions where this is not appropriate. We will not publish an inquiry report where in the Commission’s judgement it would have a detrimental impact on the effective regulation of the sector and public trust and confidence in charities.
For example, we may not publish a report where doing so could:
- have an acute detrimental impact on a particular individual or group of individuals, for example risk to personal safety
- contravene or prejudice requirements for confidentiality or where there is commercial sensitivity or a risk to National Security
- cause severe prejudice to the charity and/or its beneficiaries and is not in the best interests of the charity
- contravene the Commission’s duty to use its resources in the most efficient, effective and economic way
- it is not in the public interest to warrant publication
There may also be occasions where the Commission delays the publication of a report or publishes an interim report until a final report can be published. The circumstances in which the Commission delays the publication of a report, or produces an interim report, are as follows:
- publication is likely to prejudice the operations/investigation of a law enforcement agency or other regulator
- the Commission requires the trustees to complete certain actions within a specified timeframe
- publication is likely to prejudice ongoing or pending legal proceedings
Any decision we make based on the criteria above will be balanced against the public interest in publishing the results of an inquiry.
The Commission may, where it considers it appropriate to do so, publish a follow-up report setting out actions taken either by the Commission or the trustees after the inquiry concluded.
How we announce the opening of inquiries
We do not routinely announce the opening of formal inquiries. However, in any case in which there is a particularly high level of public interest, or if the Commission wishes to appeal to the general public for information, we will issue a press release.
AA Hamilton College Ltd Inquiry published 19 February 2013
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Astonbrook Housing Association Inquiry published 28 March 2013
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