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Critically examine the contribution made by the trust to the following areas of law Charities. (be aware if you chose this topic of the Charities Act 2006.) - Essay Example

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Critically examine the contribution made by the trust to the following areas of law Charities. (be aware if you chose this topic of the Charities Act 2006.)

If ever a piece f legislation should have been an exemplar f parliamentary best practice it is this. There was the equivalent f a White Paper (a strategy unit report); this was then subject to extensive consultation before a Bill was considered by the Joint Scrutiny Committee f the Lords and Commons. The Government responded and issued an amended Bill that was discussed at length in the Lords. After the last election this Bill was reintroduced and subject to further scrutiny in the Lords and then the Commons. (Jobome 2006, 43-59)
After all this do we have a magnificent piece f legislation Hardly. It is a useful technical Bill that introduces reforms, making the Charity Commission a body corporate with a larger board and an independent chairman; a charity tribunal to enable the commission's decisions to be more easily challenged; a range f innovations to facilitate greater accountability f charities; easing restrictions on mergers as well as updating old-fashioned constitutions and a long-overdue overhaul f the law relating to public charitable collections.
The real innovation is the definition f charity. Since 1601 the meaning has developed through case law. Those established that charities have to relieve poverty, advance religion, advance education or other purposes beneficial to the community. This last category was a catch-all that allowed flexible development f the law. Hence it encompassed organisations concerned with health, the environment, human rights, the arts and a variety f other causes.
This portmanteau has been unpicked and there are now 13 charitable purposes listed: the original four plus nine others, some f which, such as the advancement f amateur sport, are slightly different from the past.
The big change was supposed to be about public benefit. For religious, poverty and educational charities it has been assumed that they delivered public benefit unless the contrary was proven. Hence this covered independent schools and hospitals and all religious groups from churches to sects. Only charities with purposes beneficial to the community had to prove that they delivered public benefit. The Act changes this. It requires all charities to demonstrate that they deliver public benefit. Yet having gone so far the Government bottled out. It refused to define what public benefit means. It has left it to the Charity Commission2 to do this, based on the existing case law.
That case law is, to put it mildly, problematic. The leading case endorses the status quo, where a school or hospital can claim charitable status if it saves the taxpayer money or provides extra facilities unavailable in the state sector. The Charity Commission has announced that there will be public consultation about what public benefit means, and this will be guided by a group chaired by Professor Albert Weale3, f Essex University.
This saga demonstrates the constitutional crises affecting the UK Parliament and, in particular, dilution f the doctrine f separation f powers by this and previous governments. Here is a key topic -public benefit -with wide social ramifications that the ...Show more


Understanding the concept f charity is very important. It's an significant issue because charities play a essential part in civil society. They contribute at least a million people volunteer to serve as trustees -charities touch every corner f British society.
Author : stoltenberglais
Critically examine the contribution made by the trust to the following areas of law Charities. (be aware if you chose this topic of the Charities Act 2006.) essay example
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