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Charitable Fundraising Act 1991
Does not include amendments by:
Licensing and Registration (Uniform Procedures) Act 2002 No 28 (not commenced)
Reprint No 1
1 April 2003
An Act to regulate public fundraising for charitable purposes; to repeal the Charitable
Collections Act 1934 and to amend certain other Acts; and for other purposes.
Part 1 – Preliminary
1 Name of Act
This Act may be cited as the Charitable Fundraising Act 1991 .
This Act commences on a day or days to be appointed by proclamation.
The objects of this Act are:
(a) to promote proper and efficient mana gement and administration of fundraising
appeals for charitable purposes, and
(b) to ensure proper keeping and auditing of accounts in connection with such appeals,
(c) to prevent deception of members of the public who desire to support worthy causes.
(1) In this Act:”authorised inspector” means a person appointed under this Act as an
inspector or a person authorised by or under th is Act to exercise the functions of an
authorised inspector. “authority” means an authority in force under Part 2.”charitable
purpose” includes any benevolent, phila nthropic or patriotic purpose.”conducting a
fundraising appeal” is defined in section 6. “fundraising appeal” is defined in section
5.”organisation” includes any board of trustees or other body of persons, whether
incorporated or unincorporated. “participating in a fundraising appeal” is defined in
section 6. “registered office” of a person or organisation, or branch of an organisation,
that conducts fundraising appeal s pursuant to an authority means the address stated in the
application form referred to in section 15.
(2) In this Act:
(a) a reference to a function includes a reference to a power, authority and duty,
(b) a reference to the exercise of a func tion includes, where the function is a duty,
a reference to the performance of the duty.
5 Meaning of “fundraising appeal”
(1) For the purposes of this Act, the solicit ing or receiving by any person of any money,
property or other benefit constitu tes a fundraising appeal if, before or in the course of any
such soliciting or receivi ng, the person represents:
(a) that the purpose of that soliciting or receiving, or
(b) that the purpose of an activity or enterprise of which that soliciting or
receiving is a part,
is or includes a charitable purpose.
(2) It does not matter whether the money or be nefit concerned is solicited or received:
(a) in person or by other means (such as by post, telephone or facsimile
(b) as a donation or otherwise (such as by participation in a lottery, art union or
competition; by sponsorship in connecti on with a walkathon, telethon or other
similar event; in connection with the supply of food, entertainment or other goods
or services; or in c onnection with any other commercial undertaking).
(3) The following do not, however, constitute a fundraising appeal for the purposes of
(a) a request for, or the receipt of, an amount required in good faith as the fee for
renewal of membership of an organisation,
(b) an appeal by an organisation to (or the receipt of money or a benefit from)
members of the organisation,
(c) a request that any property be devised or bequeathed, or the giving of any
information as to the means by which any property may be devised or bequeathed,
(d) an appeal conducted exclusively or predominantly among persons sharing a
common employer or place of work by one of those persons (being an appeal for
a charitable purpose connected directly with another of those persons or any such
other person’s immediate family) and the receipt of money or a benefit from any
(e) an appeal to (or the receipt of mo ney or a benefit from) any Commonwealth,
State or local government authority,
(f) anything prescribed by the regulations.
6 Meaning of “conducting” or “partici pating in” a fundraising appeal
(1) For the purposes of this Act, a person conducts a fundraising appeal if the person
organises the appeal, whether alone or with others, whether in person or by an agent or
employee and whether on the person’s own behalf or as an officer or member of the
governing body of an organisation.
(2) For the purposes of this Act, a person par ticipates in a fundraising appeal if the person
solicits or receives any money, pr operty or other benefit in the course of the appeal, or
assists in organising the appeal.
(3) For the purposes of this Act, a person w ho participates in a fundraising appeal does
not conduct the appeal if the person participat es in it solely as the agent, employee or
collector (whether voluntary or not) of or for another person who is conducting the
(4) For the purposes of this Act, a person does not participate in an appeal merely
because the person gives any money or be nefit in the course of the appeal.
7 Religious organisations exempt from Act
(1) This Act (apart from section 48) does not apply to:
(a) a religious body or a reli gious organisation in respect of which a proclamation
is in force under section 26 of the Marriage Act 1961 of the Commonwealth or a
religious body, or an organisation or office, within a denomination in respect of
which such a proclamation is in force, or
(b) a religious body or religious organisation prescribed by the regulations, or
(c) any body or organisation that is cer tified in writing by the principal or
executive officer of a body or organisation refe rred to in paragraph (a) or (b) to be
affiliated with and approved by the organisation or body so referred to, or
(d) a member or employee of a body or organisation referred to in paragraph (a),
(b) or (c), or any other person, who is acting with its authority.
(2) The Minister may, by order published in the Gazette, declare that, despite subsection
(1), this Act and the regulations apply (or appl y to the extent specified in the order) to a
person, body or organisation specified in th e order, and such an order has effect
(3) By way of example of the power confe rred by subsection (2), an order under that
subsection may apply the provisions of Part 3 to a person, body or organisation that has
failed to give a satisfactory re ply to a request by the Minister for information concerning
any fundraising appeal conducted by the person, body or organisation.
8 Crown bound by this Act
This Act binds the Crown not only in right of New South Wales but also, in so far as the
legislative power of Parliament pe rmits, in all its other capacities.
Part 2 – Fundraising appeals
Division 1 – Offences
9 Conducting unlawful fundraising
(1) A person who conducts a fundraising appeal is guilty of an offence unless the person:
(a) is the holder of an authority authorising the person to conduct the appeal, or
(b) is a member of an organisation, or an employee or agent of a person or
organisation, that holds such an authority and is authorised, by the person or
organisation that holds the aut hority, to conduct the appeal, or
(c) is authorised under subsection (3) to conduct the appeal without an authority.
(2) A person who conducts a fundraising a ppeal in contravention of any condition
attached to an authority authorising the appeal is guilty of an offence.
(3) The following may conduct a fundraising ap peal without being the holder of an
(a) an organisation or person, or one of a class of organisations or persons,
authorised by the regulations,
(b) an organisation established by an Act and subject to the control and direction
of a Minister,
(c) a member, employee or agent of any orga nisation or other person referred to in
paragraph (a) or (b) who is authorised by the organisation or other person to
conduct the appeal,
(d) a person who, in accordance with section 11, conducts the appeal in
conjunction with the holder of an authority.
10 Participating in unlawful fundraising
A person who participates in a fundraising app eal which the person knows, or could reasonably
be expected to know, is being conducted unlawfully is guilty of an offence.
11 Appeals conducted by persons engaged in bus iness or otherwise deriving benefit
(1) A person (in this section called the “trader”) must not conduct a fundraising appeal:
(a) in connection with the supply of goods or services in the course of any trade or
business carried on by the person, or
(b) otherwise partly for the person’s benefit,
except in accordance with this section.
(2) Such an appeal must be conducted in accordance with the following conditions:
(a) the appeal must be conducted jointly by the trader and a pe rson or organisation
that holds an authority to conduct the appeal,
(b) any advertisement, notice or informa tion concerning the appeal must identify
the trader and the holder of the authority,
(c) any such advertisement, notice or information must gi ve details (to the extent
required by the conditions of the authority) of the intended distribution of funds
raised in the appeal or of any guara nteed minimum payment, or proportion of
profits, to be paid by the trader to any person or organisation as a result of the
(3) Nothing in this section affects the Minister’s discretionary power to attach any other
condition to an authority.
(1) A person who publishes any advertisemen t, notice or information relating to any
fundraising appeal which the pe rson knows, or could reasonably be expected to know, is
being conducted unlawfully is guilty of an offence.
(2) In this section, “publishing” includes:
(a) causing to be published, and
(b) publishing by spoken words, whether directly or through any electronic
(c) transmitting by facsimile machine.
13 False statements etc
(1) A person who:
(a) in an application or notice ma de or given under this Act, or
(b) in any record or document relating to a fundraising appeal,
makes any statement that the person knows, or could reasonably be expected to know, is
false or misleading in a material part icular is guilty of an offence.
(2) A person:
(a) who is conducting or is proposing to conduct a fundraising appeal, or
(b) who is acting on behalf of a person who is conducting or is proposing to
conduct a fundraising appeal,
must not represent to an employee, agent or collector (whether voluntary or not) that any
thing required or permitted by this Act to be done, or any condition precedent to a
fundraising appeal to be comp lied with, has been done or complied with when in fact it
Division 2 – Authority to conduct fundraising appeals
14 Application for authority
(1) A person or organisation that wants to conduct fundraising appeals may apply to the
Minister for an authority to do so.
(2) Persons or organisations may combine to ma ke one application if each such person or
organisation is separately identified in the application.
(3) An application may relate to a particular appeal or appeals or to appeals generally.
(4) An application made by an organisation may request that the authority issued in
pursuance of the application authorise the conduct of fundraising appeals by members of
specified branches of the organisation.
(5) An authority may be issued in terms reque sted under subsection (4) if the Minister is
satisfied that each of the branches concerned is responsible to, and is under the direction
and control of, the governing body of the appl icant organisation. In such a case, the
governing body of each branch is taken, for the pu rposes of this Act, to be the holder of
15 Form of application
(1) An application for an authority is to be in the form approved by the Minister.
(2) A form approved for such an application is to require the applicant to state in the
application an address in New South Wales to which any notices or other documents can
be forwarded for the purposes of this Act. The address so stated is, for the purposes of
this Act, the registered office of the applicant.
(3) If the authority is to au thorise the conducting of one or more fundraising appeals by
branches of an organisation, the form of a pplication must require an address in New
South Wales to be stated for each such branch. In such a case, each such branch is taken,
for the purposes of this Act, to have its regist ered office at the address specified in respect
of it, and any requirement of this Act in rela tion to the registered office of the holder of
an authority applies accordingly.
16 How application dealt with
(1) On receiving an application for an authority, the Minister may:
(a) grant the application unconditionally, or grant the application subject to
(b) refuse the application.
(2) The Minister may refuse an application for an authority if the Minister is not satisfied
as to any one or more of the following matters:
(a) that the proposed appeal will be conducted in good faith for charitable
(b) that all of the persons proposing to conduct the appeal , and all persons
associated with the proposed appeal, are f it and proper persons to administer, or to
be associated with, a fundraising appeal for charitable purposes,
(c) that the proposed appeal will be administered in a proper manner,
(d) that the grant of an authority would not facilitate the contravention of any Act,
(e) that the applicant can and will ensure that persons conducting or participating
in the proposed appeal will comply with the provisions of this Act and the
regulations and the conditions of the authority,
(f) that the applicant has furnished all th e information required to be furnished in
relation to the proposed appeal,
(g) that, having regard to the purposes and activities, or likely activities, of the
applicant, names, designations or titles pr oposed to be used in connection with the
proposed appeal are appropriate and not misleading,
(h) that it is in the public in terest to grant the authority.
(3) If the Minister refuses an application fo r an authority, the Minister is required to
advise the applicant of the reasons for the refusal.
(4) The Minister may decline to deal with an application for an authority until the
applicant furnishes the Minister with such in formation relating to the application as the
(5) Receipt by the Minister of an applica tion for an authority, or of any further
information required under subsection (4), is to be acknowledged by notice (a “receipt
notice” ) to the applicant.
(6) If the Minister has not disposed of an a pplication for an authority within a period of
60 days after the date of the re ceipt notice for the application (or–if further information is
sought under subsection (4) duri ng that period–within 60 days after the date of the
receipt notice for that information) the appl ication is taken to have been approved. In
such a case, the authority is taken to have been duly granted subject only to such
conditions as may be prescribed by regulations made for the purposes of this subsection.
(7) Nothing in subsection (6) a ffects the power of the Minister to vary the conditions of
an authority in accordance with the provisions of this Part.
17 Right conferred by authority
An authority may be granted so as to authorise a single fundraising appeal or a specified number
of such appeals or an indefinite number of such appeals.
18 Duration of authority
(1) Unless sooner revoked, an authority remain s in force for the period specified in the
(2) If the authority does not specify such a period, the authority remains in force until
19 Conditions of authority
(1) The Minister may attach to an authority any condition that, having regard to the
objects and purposes of this Ac t and the public interest, the Minister thinks ought to be
imposed in the particular case.
(2) The conditions for the time being attached to an authority may be varied by the
Minister by notice in writing serv ed on the holder of the authority.
(3) For the purposes of this Act:
(a) the imposition of a condition on an au thority to which no conditions were
previously attached, or
(b) the imposition of any new condition on an authority, or
(c) the amendment of a cond ition of an authority, or
(d) the removal of a condition of an authority,
is a variation of its conditions.
Division 3 – Application of funds raised
20 Proceeds of appeal
(1) Any money or benefit received in the cour se of a fundraising appeal conducted by the
holder of an authority is to be applied accord ing to the objects or purposes represented by
or on behalf of the persons conducting the appeal as the purposes or objects of the appeal.
(2) Subsection (1) does not operate:
(a) so as to prevent the deduction of la wful and proper expenses in accordance
with the authority under which the appeal is conducted, or
(b) so as to prejudice the operation of the Dormant Funds Act 1942 or of any Act
or other law relating to the cy-pres applic ation or other application of trust money.
(3) The regulations may specify, or make provision for or with respect to the
determination (by the decision of the Minister or otherwise) of, what constitutes a lawful
and proper expense in connecti on with particular fundraising appeals or any class or
description of fundraising appeals or fundraising appeals generally.
(4) Any relevant Act or other law relating to the cy-pres appl ication or other application
of trust money applies to any money (not being trust money) that is subject to subsection
(5) Money or any benefit received in the c ourse of a fundraising appeal may be applied
outside New South Wales, except to the extent that:
(a) to apply it in that way would contrave ne subsection (1) or any other law, or
(b) the Minister, having regard to the public interest, prohibits the application of
any such money or benefit by a condition of an authority authorising the appeal
(6) Any money received in the course of a fundraising appeal, before the deduction of
any expenses, is to be paid immediately in to an account at a bank, building society or
credit union or at any other institution prescribed (or of a class prescribed) by the
regulations. The account is to consist only of money raised in the fundraising appeal
concerned, or in that and other such app eals conducted by the same persons. The account
is to be kept in the name of or on behalf of the person conducting the appeal and is to be
operated by not fewer than 2 persons jointly. Th is subsection, however, has effect subject
to the conditions of any particular authority.
(7) A person conducting a fundraising appeal , or any member of the governing body of
an organisation on whose behalf such an appeal is conducted, who:
(a) by act or omission is in any way directly or indirectly concerned in or party to
a contravention of this section, or
(b) aids, abets, counsels or procures a contravention,
is guilty of an offence.
(8) A person convicted of an offence under th is section in connection with a fundraising
appeal conducted on behalf of an organisati on is, in addition to any liability for the
offence, liable to the organisation for the loss incurred by the organisation as a result of
(9) An amount for which a person is liable under subsection (8) may be recovered by the
organisation concerned as a debt in any court of competent jurisdiction.
(1) Money received in the course of a f undraising appeal which is not immediately
required to be applied to the purposes or objects of the app eal may be invested only in a
manner for the time being authorised by law for the investment of trust funds.
(2) This section is subject to the provisions of the Public Authorities (Financial
Arrangements) Act 1987 or any other Act which confers special powers of investment on
the person or organisation concerned.
Division 4 – Requirements to be met by fundraisers
22 Keeping of records
(1) A person or organisation that conducts or has conducted a fundraising appeal must
keep, in accordance with this section, records of income and expenditure in relation to
each such appeal.
(2) The records must:
(a) be kept in writing in the English language or so as to enable the records to be
readily accessible and readily convertible into writing in the English language,
(b) include any particulars required by the regulations, and
(c) subject to the conditions of any authorit y, be kept at all times at the registered
office of the person conducting the appeal, and
(d) be kept for a period of at least 7 year s (or such shorter period as the Minister
may approve) after the receipt of the income or the incurring of the expenditure to
which they relate.
(3) A person or organisation that contravenes th is section is guilty of an offence. In the
case of an unincorporated organisation, every trustee or other person who, at the time of
the offence, was a member of the governi ng body of the organisation is guilty of an
23 Periodic return by holder of authority (o ther than incorporated organisation)
(1) A natural person or unincorporated organisation that for the time being holds an
authority to conduct a fundraising appeal must send to the Minister returns giving details
of the application of the pr oceeds of any fundraising appeal s conducted by the person or
organisation since the last such return was fu rnished (or, if no such returns have been
lodged previously, since th e authority was granted).
(2) The returns are to be sent at such interv als as may be specified in the authority, at
such times as may be so specified (or within such further time as the Minister may
(3) Each such return is to be in a form approved by the Minister and must show:
(a) the gross amounts received from each appeal, and
(b) the net amount received after the deduction of expenses.
(4) A person or organisation that contravenes th is section is guilty of an offence. In the
case of an unincorporated organisation, every trustee or other person who, at the time of
the offence, was a member of the governi ng body of the organisation is guilty of an
(1) The accounts of any person or organisation that for the time being holds an authority
to conduct a fundraising appeal, in so far as those accounts relate to receipts and
expenditure in connectio n with any such appeals, must be audited annually by a person
qualified to audit accounts for the purposes of the Corporations Act 2001 of the
Commonwealth or having other qualifications or experience approved by the Minister.
(2) The auditor must report on:
(a) whether the accounts show a true and fair view of the financial result of
fundraising appeals for the year to which they relate, and
(b) whether the accounts and associated r ecords have been properly kept during
that year in accordance with th is Act and the regulations, and
(c) whether money received as a result of fundraising appeals conducted during
that year has been properly accounted for a nd applied in accordance with this Act
and the regulations, and
(d) the solvency of the person or organisation.
(3) If the auditor, in the cour se of the performance of the auditor’s duties for the purposes
of this section, is satisfied that:
(a) there has been a contravention of this Act or the regulations, and
(b) the circumstances are such that, in the auditor’s opinion, the matter has not
been or will not be adequately dealt with by comment in the auditor’s report on
the accounts or by bringing the matter to th e notice of the person concerned or of
the trustees or members of the governing body of the organisation concerned (as
the case may be),
the auditor must immediately repo rt the matter to the Minister.
(4) A person or organisation that fails to ha ve accounts audited as required by this section
is guilty of an offence. In the case of an unincorporated organisation, every trustee or
other person who, at the tim e of offence, was a member of the governing body of the
organisation is guilty of an offence.
(5) The requirements of this section are in addition to the requirem ents of any other law
(including the Corporations Act 2001 of the Commonwealth).
(6) The whole or any part of a report prepared for the purposes of this section in respect
of a corporation may be included in an audito r’s report prepared for the purposes of the
Corporations Act 2001 of the Commonwealth or any other law in respect of the
(7) Nothing in subsection (6) is intended to provide for the inclusi on of any matter in an
auditor’s report for the purposes of the Corporations Act 2001 of the Commonwealth or
any other law of the Commonwealth if the incl usion of that matter would be contrary to
the provisions of that Act or law.
(1) The regulations may make provision for or with respect to the exemption of a person
or organisation (or of a class of persons or or ganisations) from all or any of the provisions
of this Division, other than any provision relating to the keeping of records.
(2) If a person or organisation referred to in subsection (1) enters into a contract or
arrangement with another person by which that other person will or might receive any
remuneration or benefit for c onducting or participating in a fundraising appeal, that other
person is not, by virtue of this section or any regulation, exempt from any of the
provisions of this Division.
Part 3 – Powers of the Mini ster in respect of fundraisers
Division 1 – Investigations
26 Minister may inquire into fundraisers
(1) The Minister may, with respect to any matte r arising under this Act, inquire into any
person or organisation that:
(a) is conducting or has conducted, or is participating or has participated in, a
fundraising appeal, or
(b) the Minister has reas on to believe is conducting or has conducted, or is
participating or has particip ated in, a fundraising appeal.
(2) The Minister may cause an inquiry under th is section to be made by an authorised
inspector, either with respect to a particular matter or with respect to any matter.
27 Power of Minister to require accounts etc
(1) For the purposes of any inquiry under th is Part, the Minister or an authorised
inspector may require any person to do any one or more of the following:
(a) to furnish accounts and statements in writing with respect to any matter in
question at the inquiry, being a matter about which the person has or can
reasonably obtain information,
(b) to provide answers in writing to any questions addressed to the person on any
(c) to verify any such account, statemen t or answer by statutory declaration,
(d) to attend at a specified time and place and give evidence or produce
documents in the person’s custody or under the person’s control which relate to
any matter in question at the inquiry,
(e) to furnish copies of or extracts fr om any document in the person’s custody or
under the person’s control which relates to any matter in question at the inquiry or
to make any such document available for inspection.
(2) Any requirement under this section is to be made by notice in writing served on the
person concerned and specifying a reasonable tim e within which the requirement is to be
(3) For the purposes of any inquiry under th is Part, evidence may be taken on oath and
the person conducting the inquiry may for that purpose administer oaths.
(4) The person conducting the i nquiry may take possession of documents produced to the
person for such period as the person consider s necessary for the purposes of the inquiry
and may make copies of or take extracts from them. During that period the person
conducting the inquiry must permit a person who would be entitled to inspect any one or
more of those documents if they were not in the possession of the person conducting the
inquiry to inspect at all reas onable times such of those docum ents as that person would be
entitled to inspect.
28 Power of entry and inspection
(1) If an authorised inspector believes on reasonable grounds that any documents relevant
to an inquiry under this Part are likely to be found on any premises, the authorised
(a) enter the premises, and
(b) require production of the documents, and
(c) take copies of or extracts from the documents or take possession of the
documents for such period as he or she considers necessary for the purposes o
(2) Section 27 (4) applies to documen ts taken under subsection (1) (c).
(3) A power conferred by this section:
(a) may not be exercised in relation to any premises used as a dwelling, or in
relation to a part of any premises so used, except with the consent of the occupier
of the premises or part or by the authority of a search warrant, and
(b) may be exercised only at reasonable times and on reasonable notice to the
occupier of any affected premises, except where the Minister has certified that, in
the circumstances, the power may be otherwise exercised (in which case it may be
exercised in accordance with the Minister’s directions).
(4) A power conferred by this section may not be exercised unless the person exercising
it is in possession of a certificate issued by the Minister which:
(a) states that it is issued under this Act, and
(b) gives the name of the person to whom it is issued, and
(c) describes the nature of the powers conferred, and
(d) bears the signature of the Minister.
(5) A person exercising a power to enter premises must produce his or her certificate to
the occupier of the premises.
(6) If damage is caused by a person exercising a power to enter premises, a reasonable
amount of compensation is recoverable as a de bt owed by the Crown to the owner of the
premises unless the occupier hindered or obstructed the exercise of the power.
29 Search warrant
(1) An authorised inspector may apply to an authorised officer (within the meaning of the
Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002 ) for a search warrant if the
inspector has reasonable grounds for believing that documents relating to any matter in
question at an inquiry being conducted under this Act are kept at a particular place and
(a) the place is used as a dwelling, or
(b) a person having custody or control of those documents has neglected or failed
to comply with a requirement under this Act to produce them or to furnish copies
of or extracts from them, or
(c) the place is unoccupied or the occupier is temporarily absent.
(2) The authorised officer to whom the applica tion is made may, if satisfied that there are
reasonable grounds for doing so, issue a sear ch warrant authorising an authorised
inspector named in the warrant to enter the pl ace and to search for and take possession of
documents of a kind spec ified in the warrant.
(3) An authorised inspector who enters any place by virtue of such a warrant may take
with him or her such other persons as ma y be necessary, and on leaving any unoccupied
place so entered must, as far as practicable , leave it as effectively secured against
trespassers as he or she found it.
(4) Division 4 of Part 5 of the Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002
applies to a search warrant issued under this section.
30 Offences in relation to inquiries
A person who:
(a) neglects or fails to comply with a re quirement duly made by a notice under this
Division within the time speci fied in the notice, or
(b) alters, destroys or conceals any docume nt referred to in section 27 (1) (e), or
(c) refuses to take an oath required to be taken under this Division, or
(d) hinders or obstructs the Minister or any authorised inspector in the exercise of his or
her functions under this Division,
is guilty of an offence.
Division 2 – Revocation of authority and disposition of funds
31 Revocation of authority
(1) The Minister may, by order published in the Gazette, revoke an authority if the
Minister is satisfied:
(a) that any fundraising app eal conducted by the holder of the authority has not
been conducted in good faith for charitable purposes, or
(b) that any of the persons who have c onducted a fundraising appeal by virtue of
the authority, or any persons associated with any such appeal, are not fit and
proper persons to administer, or to be associated with, a fundraising appeal for
charitable purposes, or
(c) that any fundraising app eal conducted by virtue of the authority has been
improperly administered, or
(d) that, in connection with any fundra ising appeal conducted by virtue of the
authority, the provisions of this Act or the regulations or the conditions of the
authority were not complied with by any person conducting or participating in the
(e) that the holder has not conducted a fundraising appeal within the previous 24
(f) that, in the public interest, the authority should be revoked.
(2) The revocation of an authority is not st ayed by lodgment of an appeal against the
(3) The revocation of an authority does not have effect until notice of the revocation, and
of the reasons for it, is served on the holder of the authority.
(4) Notice of the revocation of an authority is to be published by the Minister in one or
more newspapers circulating throughout New South Wales.
(5) If the Minister has revoked an authorit y, the Minister may subsequently, if the
Minister thinks fit, issue a fu rther authority (whether in the same terms or otherwise) to
the same person or organisation without the need for further application.
32 Application of funds in absence of authority
(1) If the Minister has revoked the authorit y of any person or organisation or if the
Minister is satisfied that a person or organisation is conducting or has conducted a
fundraising appeal without lawf ul authority or in a manner contrary to the person’s or
organisation’s authority to do so, the Minister may apply to the Supreme Court for an
order for the disposition of assets of the person or organisation which the Supreme Court
is satisfied are, or are traceable to, the proceeds of any fundraising appeal conducted by
the person or organisation.
(2) More than one such application may be made in respect of the same person or
(3) Having regard to the purposes or objects of any fundraising appeals to which any such
assets are referable, the Supreme Court may make such order for their disposition as it
(4) The Supreme Court in any such case may ma ke such consequential or ancillary orders
as it thinks fit.
Division 3 – Administration of fundra ising organisations by administrator
33 Appointment of administrator
(1) The Minister may, by instrument in writing, appoint an administrator:
(a) to conduct the affairs and activities of any non-profit organisation that is
conducting or has conducted one or more fundraising appeal s, or that has or had
as one of its objects a ch aritable purpose, or
(b) to conduct such of the affairs and ac tivities of any other organisation that is
conducting or has conducted one or more fundraising appeals as relate to the
administration, application and management of funds raised in any such appeal.
(2) An administrator is not to be appointed unless the Minister believes on reasonable
(a) after the organisation has been notified by the Minister of any contravention of
a provision of this Act or the regul ations or a condition imposed on the
organisation by or under this Act:
(i) the organisation has failed to reme dy the contravention to the extent
that it is capable of remedy, or
(ii) the organisation has committed a further contravention of the provision
or condition, or
(iii) the contravention of the prov ision or condition has continued, or
(b) an examination or inquiry under this Act in relation to the organisation has
disclosed reasonable grounds to suspect a misappropriation of funds of the
organisation or of mismanagement of the organisation, or
(c) for other reasons it is in the public inte rest that the administrator be appointed.
34 Notice of appointment
(1) The Minister must serve notice of the appointment of an administrator on the
(2) When a notice under th is section is served on a non-profit organisation:
(a) the members of the gove rning body of the organisation cease to hold office,
(b) if the notice so provides , all contracts of employmen t with the organisation are
(c) if the notice so provid es, all contracts for the pr ovision of secretarial or
administrative services to the organisation are terminated.
(1) An administrator has the functions of the governing body of the organisation and no
appointment of a person to that body may be made while the administrator holds office,
except as required by this section.
(2) Before revoking the appointment of an ad ministrator for an organisation (otherwise
than for the purpose of appointing a new administrator), the Minister must:
(a) ensure that the members of the governing body of the organisation have been
appointed in accordance with the constitution of the organisation, or
(b) appoint those members.
(3) Members of the governing body of an orga nisation appointed by the Minister under
this section are taken to have been appoint ed in accordance with the constitution of the
(4) Any members so appointed:
(a) take office on revocation of the a ppointment of the administrator, and
(b) hold office in accordance with the cons titution of the organisation concerned.
36 Audit requirements while administrator holds office
(1) For so long as an administrator holds office, the provisions of any relevant Act or law
relating to the appointment and re-appointment of auditors and the functions of auditors
(being provisions which would have been appl icable to the organisation concerned if the
administrator had not been appointed) c ontinue to apply to the organisation.
(2) For the purposes of the application of thos e provisions, a reference in those provisions
to the directors of a company is to be constr ued as a reference to the administrator of the
37 Expenses of administration
(1) The expenses of and incidental to the admi nistration of the affairs and activities of an
organisation by an administrator appointe d under this Division are payable by the
(2) The remuneration of an administrator of an organisation who is not an employee of
the Crown is an expense to which this section applies and is to be fixed by the Minister.
(3) Where an administrator is an employee of the Crown, the reimbursement of the
Crown of an amount certified by the Minister in respect of the remuneration of that
employee is an expense to which this s ection applies and is recoverable from the
organisation in a court of competent ju risdiction as a debt due to the Crown.
38 Liability for losses incurred during administration
(1) An administrator appointed under this Divisi on is not liable for any loss incurred by
the organisation during the administrator’s term of office unless the loss was attributable
(a) wilful misconduct of the administrator, or
(b) gross negligence of the administrator, or
(c) wilful failure of the administrator to comply with any provision of this Act or
the regulations or of the c onstitution of the organisati on (in so far as any such
provision of the constitution is applicab le to the members of the governing body
of the organisation).
(2) Neither the Crown nor the Minister is liable for any loss incurred by the organisation
during the term of office of an administrator, whether or not th e administrator is so liable.
Division 4 – Miscellaneous provisions
39 Remission of cases to the Attorney General
(1) If the Minister is of the opinion:
(a) that legal proceedings should be instituted with respect to any person or
organisation that has conducted fundraising appeals or with respect to any assets
or affairs of such a person or organisation, and
(b) that under the circumstances it is desi rable that such proceedings should be
instituted by the Attorney General,
the Minister may remit the case to the Attorney General, together with such statements
and particulars (if any) as in the opinion of the Minister are necessary for the explanation
of the case.
(2) The Attorney General may institute and prosecute such legal proceedings as the
Attorney General, on consideration of the circumstances, considers proper in the
circumstances of the case.
40 Auditor-General to act as or provide inspector
(1) For the purposes of this Act, the Auditor-General ma y (and on the request of the
Minister, is required to):
(a) exercise the functions of an authorised inspector under this Act or the
regulations or assist and a dvise the Minister on any ma tter arising in the execution
of this Act or the regulations, or
(b) provide some suitably qualified member or members of the Auditor-General’s
staff to do so.
(2) The Auditor-General or such a member of staff has the functions of an authorised
inspector under this Ac t and the regulations.
41 Recovery of certain expenses
(1) If the Minister so direct s, the whole or any part of the expenses incurred by the
Auditor-General in or in connection with the exercise by the Auditor-General or a
member of the Auditor-General’s staff of any of the functions of an authorised inspector
in relation to a particular organisation is payable by th e organisation and recoverable
from the organisation by the Auditor-General as a debt in a court of competent
(2) If the Minister so directs, the remune ration of and any expenses incurred by an
authorised inspector who is not an employ ee of the Crown are, where the remuneration
and expenses are referable to the exercise of any of the functions of the inspector under
this Act in relation to a particular pers on or organisation, payable by the person or
organisation and recoverable in a court of competent jurisdiction as a debt due to the
(3) The amount recoverable from a person or organisation under subsection (1) is an
amount certified by the Auditor-General to be the amount so recoverable.
(4) The amount recoverable from a person or organisation under subsection (2) is an
amount certified by the Minister to be the amount so recoverable.
(5) If the organisation concerned is an unincorporated organisation, the trustees or
persons who are members of the governing body of the organisation are jointly and
severally liable for any debts of the organisation under this section.
Part 4 – Reviews by Administrative Decisions Tribunal
42 Review of refusal to grant authority or against conditions imposed on authority
An applicant for an authority who is dissatisfied with any decision of the Minister with respect to
the application may apply to th e Administrative Decisions Tribuna l for a review of the decision.
43 Review of revocation of authority
A person or organisation whose authority is revoked may apply to the Administrative Decisions
Tribunal for a review of the revocation.
44 Review of variation of authority
A person or organisation that holds an authority may apply to the Administrative Decisions
Tribunal for a review of any variation of the conditions attached to the authority.
45 Determination of applications
The Administrative Decisions Tribunal, in determini ng a review under this Act, is to inquire into
and decide the application having regard to the provisions of this Act and the public interest.
Part 5 – Miscellaneous
47 Public access to information
(1) A person or organisation that is (or, within the previous 12 months, was) the holder of
an authority must, within 30 days after being requested to do so by any person, furnish
the person with:
(a) any audited financial statements requested by the person concerning
fundraising appeals conducte d by the person or organisation concerned during its
last financial year and, to the extent that the regulations so require, during
previous financial years, and
(b) in the case of an or ganisation–such informati on as the regulations may
prescribe concerning the objects and c onstitution (including the names and
addresses of members of the governi ng body of the organisation) of the
(2) Any such information and financial statements may, at the request of any person, be
supplied to the person by or on behalf of the Minister.
(3) A person is not entitled to be supplied with information or financial statements under
this section unless the person has paid any relevant fee pr escribed by the regulations.
48 Remuneration of board members of charitable organisations
(1) A person is not prohibited (despite any law to the contrary) from holding office or
acting as a member of the governing body of a non-profit orga nisation having as one of
its objects a charitable purpose merely becau se the person receives any remuneration or
benefit from the organisation if:
(a) the Minister, by order published in the Gazette, has declared that this section
applies to that office, or
(b) the Minister has given prior approva l of a person who receives any such
remuneration or benefit hol ding that office or acting in that capacity, or
(c) the person concerned holds that office or acts in that capacity by virtue of his
or her office as a minister of religi on or a member of a religious order.
(2) An approval under this section is subjec t to any conditions imposed by the Minister
when giving the approval.
(3) An approval under this section is to be in writing. Applications for such approvals
must be addressed in writing to the Minister by the organisation concerned.
(4) For the purposes of this section, ever y body, organisation or office referred to in
section 7 (1) is taken to be a non-profit organisation having among its objects one or
more charitable purposes.
49 Authorised inspectors
(1) The Minister may appoint any person to be an inspector for the purposes of this Act.
(2) The Minister may authorise a police officer or other person to exercise such of the
functions of an authorised inspector under this Act as the Minister may direct.
(3) The regulations may authorise police o fficers of or above any specified rank to
exercise all or any specifie d functions of an authorised inspector under this Act.
50 Proceedings for offences
(1) Proceedings for an offence against this Ac t or the regulations are to be dealt with
summarily by a Local Court.
(2) Any such proceedings may be commenced at any time within 3 years after the offence
was allegedly committed.
51 Offences by corporations
(1) If a corporation contravenes any provision of this Act or the regulations, each person
who is a director of the co rporation or who is concerned in the management of the
corporation is taken to have contravened the same provision if the person knowingly
authorised or permitted the contravention.
(2) A person may be proceeded against a nd convicted under a provision pursuant to
subsection (1) whether or not the corporati on has been proceeded against or convicted
under that provision.
(3) Nothing in this section affects any liab ility imposed on a corporation for an offence
committed by the corporation against this Act or the regulations.
52 Evidence of certain matters
A certificate purporting to be si gned by the Minister or by an officer prescribed by the
regulations and stating:
(a) that, at times specified in the certificate, a person or organisation named in the
certificate was the holder of an authority, or
(b) that, at times specified in the certifi cate, a person or organisation named in the
certificate was not the hold er of an authority, or
(c) that, at times specified in the certificate, conditions specified in the certificate were
attached to a particular authority,
is admissible in any legal proceedings and is ev idence of the matter stated in the certificate.
The Minister may delegate to any public servant a ny of the Minister’s functions under this Act or
the regulations (other than this power of delegation).
54 Service of documents
(1) A document required or permitted by or under this Act to be served on a person may,
if the person is a natural person, be served:
(a) by delivering the document to the person, or
(b) by sending the document by post addressed to the person at the person’s last
known place of residence or at th e person’s registered office, or
(c) by leaving the document at the person’ s last known place of residence with
some person apparently resident at that place and apparently not less than 16
years of age, or
(d) by leaving the document at the person’s last known place of business or at the
person’s registered office with someone apparently in the service of the person
and apparently not less than 16 years of age.
(2) A document required or permitted by or under this Act to be served on a person may,
if the person is a corporation, be served:
(a) by sending the document by post addressed to the corporation at its registered
office or principal place of business in New South Wales, or
(b) by leaving it at the registered office or principal place of business in New
South Wales of the corporation with some person apparently employed in
connection with the business of the corporation and apparently not less than 16
years of age.
(3) A document required or permitted by or under this Act to be served on an
organisation may, if the organisation is not incorporated, be served:
(a) by sending the document by post addressed to the trustees or members of the
governing body of the organisation at its registered office, or
(b) by serving it on any such trustee or member of the governing body in any
manner that, by this section or otherwise according to law, constitutes sufficient
service on a natural person.
(4) The provisions of this section are in addition to, and do not prejudice the operation of,
any other law prescribing procedures sufficient for service of documents.
(1) The Governor may make regulations, not in consistent with this Act, for or with
respect to any matter that by this Act is required or permitted to be prescribed or that is
necessary or convenient to be prescribed for carrying out or giving effect to this Act.
(2) The regulations may create offences puni shable by a penalty not exceeding 20 penalty
(1) The following Acts are repealed:
Charitable Collections Act 1934 No 59
Charitable Collections (Amendment) Act 1985 No 2
(2) The Charitable Collections Regulations and any other regulations in force under those
Acts are repealed.
58 Savings and transitional provisions
Schedule 2 has effect.
Schedule 1 (Repealed)
Schedule 2 Savings and transitional provisions
(1) The regulations may contain provisions of a saving or transitional nature consequent
on the enactment of this Act.
(2) Any such provision may, if the regulations so provide, take effect from the date of
assent to this Act or a later day.
(3) To the extent to which any such provision takes effect from a date that is earlier than
the date of its publication in the Gazette , the provision does not operate so as:
(a) to affect, in a manner prejudicial to any person (other than the State or an
authority of the State), the rights of that person existi ng before the date of its
(b) to impose liabilities on any person (other than the State or an authority of the
State) in respect of any thing done or omitted to be done before the date of its
2 Certain organisations taken to hold authorities
(1) An organisation which, immediat ely before the repeal of the Charitable Collections
Act 1934 , was registered under that Act as a ch arity or was exempt from registration
under that Act is taken to be the holder of an authority authorising the organisation to
conduct any number of fundraising appeals.
(2) Section 19, and the other provisions of this Act, apply to an authority created by the
operation of subclause (1).
(3) Subclause (1) ceases to apply to an organisation:
(a) when its authority is revoked under this Act, or
(b) when it alters its constitution in so far as its constitution relates to its
charitable objects, or
(c) at the end of a peri od of 2 years commencing on the repeal of the Charitable
Collections Act 1934 ,
whichever happens first.
The following abbreviations are us ed in the Historical notes:
Am amended No number Schs Schedules
Cl clause p page Sec section
Cll clauses pp pages Secs sections
Div Division Reg Regulation Subdiv Subdivision
Divs Divisions Regs
s Subdivs Subdivision
Gazette Rep repealed Subst substituted
Ins inserted Sch Schedule
Table of amending instruments Charitable Fundraising Act 1991 No 69 . Assented to
17.12.1991. Date of commencement, 1.9.1993, sec 2 and GG No 91 of 20.8.1993, p
4619. This Act has been amended as follows:
24 Financial Institutions (Miscellaneous Amendments) Act 1996 . Assented to 21.6.1996.
Date of commencement, 12.7.1996, sec 2 and GG No 84 of 12.7.1996, p 3984.
77 Administrative Decisions Legislation Amendment Act 1997 . Assented to 10.7.1997.
Date of commencement of Sch 5.5, 1.1.1999, sec 2 and GG No 178 of 24.12.1998, p
85 Statute Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act (No 2) 1999. Assented to 3.12.1999. Date
of commencement of Sch 4, assent, sec 2 (1).
34 Corporations (Consequential Amendments) Act 2001 . Assented to 28.6.2001. Date of
commencement of Sch 4.4, 15.7.2001, sec 2 (1) and Commonwealth GG No S 285 of
121 Justices Legislation Repeal and Amendment Act 2001 . Assented to 19.12.2001. Date of
commencement of Sch 2, 7.7.2003, sec 2 and GG No 104 of 27.6.2003, p 5978.
103 Law Enforcement (Powers and Responsibilities) Act 2002 . Assented to 29.11.2002.
Date of commencement of Sch 4, 1.12.2005, sec 2 and GG No 45 of 15.4.2005, p 1356.
Table of amendments
Sec 20 Am 1996 No 24, Sch 1.
Sec 24 Am 2001 No 34, Sch 4.4 -
Sec 29 Am 2002 No 103, Sch 4.5 -
Part 4 Subst 1997 No 77, Sch 5.5.
Secs 42-45 Subst 1997 No 77, Sch 5.5.
Sec 46 Rep 1997 No 77, Sch 5.5.
Sec 50 Am 2001 No 121, Sch 2.32.
Sec 57 Rep 1999 No 85, Sch 4.
Sch 1 Rep 1999 No 85, Sch 4.