Frequently Asked Questions

We offer resources to help you answer some frequently asked questions :

We offer resources to help you answer some frequently asked questions :

If the PCC is a charity, why don’t we have a Registered Charity number?

All PCCs are charities. Currently PCCs with incomes over £100,000 a year need to register with the Charity Commission. Click here to find out more.

Smaller PCCs are currently excepted from registering with the Charity Commission by statute which means that they do not have a Registered Charity number. For some grant applications and other purposes, you can supply the Inland Revenue “Gift Aid” claims reference number as a substitute, but you should be clear that this is what you are supplying.

Does this mean that PCC members are trustees?

Yes! PCC members fulfil the same roles and have the same responsibilities as trustees. Working together with the Charity Commission, we have produced a booklet to provide an introduction to the topic for PCC members. (Click here for an online copy of the trusteeship booklet)

Does the PCC have to follow the Charity Commission’s SORP accounting and reporting rules?

Yes it does. Detailed guidance on this is provided on this website on the Accounting and Reporting pages.

Are some people excluded from being trustees? Can they be members of the PCC?

Part 7 of the Church Representation Rules should ensure that people are not elected to PCCs, who are disqualified from acting as charity trustees. PCCs should do what is reasonable to ensure that the PCC does not contain any individuals disqualified from acting as a charity trustee and that the persons appointed are suitable. Guidance on eligibility for trustees can be found on the Charity Commission’s website (click here).

What reserves are we allowed to keep as a Charity?

We have produced a “Good Practice” guide to developing Reserves Policies. Click here to find out more.

What happens when parishes merge?

There is some specific guidance on the accounting and financial issues when parishes merge.

FATCA – Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act

Click here for guidance on how to fill out forms your bank may send you.

Parish Property Transactions

If the parish is looking to acquire or dispose of property, new simplified regulations were approved by the Archbishops Council in September 2015 – see the new guidance on the Ecclesiastical Property Measure.

Refusal of Donations

Occasionally a parish may be faced with a situation where it is necessary to decide whether a donation should be accepted or refused.  The overriding principle is that decisions relating to the acceptance/refusal of donations must be taken in the best interests of the charity.

Further information and guidance issued by the Institute of Fundraising in their Code of Fundraising Practice can be found here



The Charity Commission produce a range of helpful guidance notes, which can be found on the Charity Commission website.

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