Finance Resources Including Charity Commission Example Annual Accounts Templates

Finance resources, including SORP and Charity Commission example annual accounts templates, annual returns and finance policy templates particularly for small charity accounts

Charity Finance & Annual Accounts Made Simple - Templates & Resources

Charity finance resources, including SORP, FRS102 and Charity Commission example annual accounts templates, annual returns, finance policy templates, bank accounts, budgeting, and forecasting, cost control and sustainability toolkits. These work for anyone but are particularly aimed at helping with small charity accounts.


Charities often struggle to find the right Charity Commission annual accounts templates and finance guidance, so I've pasted these in below.

Charity Commission - Example Charity Annual Accounts Templates

  • Charity reporting and accounting: the essentials November 2016 (CC15d) - What trustees need to do when preparing trustees’ annual reports, accounts and annual returns for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 November 2016.
  • Prepare a charity's annual accounts - how to prepare the right annual accounts for your charity’s structure and income.
  • CC16 Receipts & Payments Accounts Pack - templates to help non-company charities prepare their trustees' annual report and receipts and payments accounts.
  • Accruals accounts pack (CC17) - SORP FRS 102 - template to help non-company charities with incomes of £500,000 or less to prepare their trustees' annual report and accruals accounts in accordance with Charities SORP FRS 102.
  • Accruals accounts pack (CC17) - SORP FRS 102 for charitable companies - template to help company charities with income of £500,000 or less prepare their trustees' report and annual accruals accounts in accordance with Charities SORP FRS 102.

Charity Commission SORP FRS 102 Annual Accounts Templates

  • Accruals accounts pack (CC17) - SORP FRS 102 - template to help non-company charities with incomes of £500,000 or less to prepare their trustees' annual report and accruals accounts in accordance with Charities SORP FRS 102.
  • Accruals accounts pack (CC17) - SORP FRS 102 for charitable companies - template to help company charities with income of £500,000 or less prepare their trustees' annual report and accruals accounts in accordance with Charities SORP FRS 102.

Small Charity Example Accounts Templates

Creating a charity budget and forecasting fundraising income is notoriously difficult. This guide provides budgeting worked examples, templates and a range of practical techniques you can use.  Click here for small charity budget and cash flow accounts templates and webinars.

Charity Commission Trustees Annual Report Template

A template with everything you need for your Charity Commission trustees annual report and filing your charity annual accounts. Here's what you need to know and do to prepare and submit your annual report and accounts, with links to all the resources you'll need, including the Charity Commission login.

A practical guide to charity independent examination and audit reports of charity annual accounts, including thresholds, the difference between audit and independent examination, and how to find an auditor or independent examiner, with links to all the resources and Charity Commission guidance you'll need.


Listed below are a range of other charity finance resources, templates and policies.

Free Accounts & Finance Support For Charities

This is just a very small selection of the accounts and finance resources within Charity Excellence, which enables you to assess your accounts and financial management in 30 mins and connects you to a huge range of free resources and support.  Plus 3 online directories Funding FinderHelp Finder and Data Finder and 60+downloadable funder lists.

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Click the AI Tech Bunny icon in the bottom right of your screen for advice, resources and templates on any aspect of charity accounts, financial management, tax or anything else to do with running a charity.  Ask it short questions, including key words.

ICAEW Charity Finance Community

Our friends at ICAEW have a Charity Community for finance professionals, trustees and charity management that is free to join and gives you access to a huge range of free finance training, resources and webinars to enable you to stay up-to-date on everything.

Their next annual Charity Finance Conference will be held on 18 and 19 January 2024.

Accounts And Reports - Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP) For Charities

I have an ACCA qualification, but I'm not an accountant and, being Scottish, prefer securing funding to counting it.  However, (to give it its full name) the Accounting and Reporting by Charities: Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP) is important in preparing charity accounts, except for small charities not required to use it. The ICAEW are proper accountants, so the best thing to do is to go to their SORP web page which has accounts templates and pretty much everything SORP related to make even the most jaded accountant happy.

UK Charity Bank Accounts

What you need to think about to open or set up a free UK charity bank or savings account for your charity, community group, club or society, how to do that and a review of the best, including Charity Commission guidance on banking.

Charity Tax Reliefs And Exemptions

We fail to claim £600m pa in Gift Aid alone and that’s just one of many HMRC charity tax and VAT reliefs and exemptions, which you can claim up to 4 years retrospectively.  Here are details of all of these, with links to the HMRC guidance, so you can claim yours.

This resource summarises the HMRC Gift Aid Rules for charities and provides guidance on what it is and how to claim it, including the 14 different ways to claim Gift Aid, the Small Donations Scheme (GASDS), declarations, records, how far back a charity can claim, limits, with links to everything you need to claim yours.

You have to register your charity or CASC with HMRC to claim Gift Aid. This guidance gives you practical step-by-step instructions on applying for HMRC charity registration, so you can claim everything you're entitled to.

Charity Financial Management And Sustainability Toolkits

At the outset of Covid, I created a series of 7 toolkits and a funder list - the initial ones were accessed nearly 40,000 times.  These are the finance ones.  Essentially, these are good financial management practices turned into toolkits that anyone can use.  I couldn't put the posh versions into the Resource Hub, but you can download these from within the system finance & resources questionnaire.

This charity financial management checklist and template, enable you to assess and respond to finance risk for your risk register and reserves, or to create your sustainability plan.

A simpler, small charity version of the of the charity financial planning template. It enables you to easily assess and respond to financial risk, for your risk register and reserves policy.

How to improve financial management in 20+ areas, to reduce your charity budget expenditure - overheads, expenses, administration and operating costs, without cost cutting. These can be significant and, even small savings add up, pay you back every month and the funding saved is always 'unrestricted'.

This toolkit provides a checklist of ways to reduce and manage charity cash requirements in a crisis or emergency, to prevent your charity closing or insolvency. It identifies 20 ways in which you can generate more cash, to buy you time to implement a recovery plan.

Charity Risk Management Policy & Register Templates

This charity risk management policy guide explains the basics of risk management and assessment. It gives you a simple 3 step process to use and sample templates for your own risk policy and risk register and includes having a charity reserves policy. It can be used for everything from trustee risk planning to assessing and managing charity shop and fundraising event risk.

Example Charity Financial Reserves Policy Template

This resource provides an example reserves policy template, explains why a reserves policy is important, what you should include, the different types of financial reserves, questions to ask yourself and links to resources to help you. It is a simple guide to the Charity Commission CC19 guidance on reserves and is aimed primarily at small charities.

Financial And Other Charity Due Diligence Checklists

charity due diligence template for checks on donors, partners contractors or others to help ensure problems will not arise in working with them and comply with donor rules & regulations.  This includes links to Charity Commission due diligence compliance toolkits and checklists for donors and partners.

This 3 step checklist gives you a simple process to evaluate and compare charity project and fundraising proposals.

Charity Treasurer And Trustee Finance FAQs

  • What is the role of a charity treasurer? The role of treasurer may vary, depending on the size and activities of your charity. In small charities, the treasurer may have day-to-day responsibility for managing your charity’s money and he or she will report to the trustee body. In larger charities, the treasurer may work with the finance officer or a finance sub-committee.
  • What is the role of the charity finance committee? The role of a charity finance committee depends on the size of a charity and its activities but usually it carries out more detailed oversight of the finances, such as preparation of the draft annual budget and financial risk plan, monitoring of management accounts, and review of the draft annual accounts and finance policies and, if applicable, audit and investment.
  • Who manages a charity’s finances? Charity trustees may delegate authority to a committee and/or officers but not responsibility.  They must all, always be aware of the charity’s financial situation and risks because they remain collectively ultimately responsible for all decisions and should make all key financial decisions.
  • What are charity internal financial controls? A charity’s internal financial controls are essential checks and procedures that help trustees meet their legal duties to safeguard the charity’s assets, administer the charity’s finances and assets in a way that identifies and manages risk and ensure the quality of financial reporting, by keeping adequate accounting records and preparing timely and relevant financial information.
  • What financial information should trustees be given? Finance should be a standing agenda item at charity trustee meetings and an up-to-date finance report and accounts sent to each trustee before the meeting. These should be understandable and, as a minimum, identify the key issues and variances, and explain these and the action being taken in response.

Charity Commission Annual Accounts FAQs

  • Do charities have to prepare accounts? All charities (whether registered with the Charity Commission or not) must prepare accounts and make them available on request.
  • What types of accounts must registered charities have? A charity may prepare either receipts and payments accounts or accruals accounts. Which of these is needed will depend on the income of the charity and whether or not it has been set up as a charitable company.
  • When should a charity use receipts and payments accounts? Receipts and payments account is the simpler of the 2 methods of accounts preparation and may only be used where a non-company charity has a gross income of £250,000 or less during the financial year.
  • When should a charity use accruals accounts? Non-company charities with gross income of over £250,000 during the financial year, and all charitable companies must prepare accruals accounts that comply with the applicable Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP).
  • What is the charities Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP)?  The Charities SORP provides guidance to preparers of charity accounts. The SORP provides recommendations and requirements setting out how to prepare ‘true and fair’ accounts in accordance with UK accounting standards.
  • What is FRS102? FRS 102 applies to financial statements that are intended to give a true and fair view of a reporting entity's financial position and profit or loss for a period. It applies not only to companies but also to public benefit and other types of entity.  For example, charities.

Filing Charity Annual Accounts - FAQs

  • Do charities have to file their accounts?  All CIOs (irrespective of income) and those registered charities with a gross income in the financial year exceeding £25,000 must file their accounts with the Charity Commission E&W.
  • Do charitable companies file their accounts with Companies House?  Charitable companies must file their accounts at Companies House, as well as with their charity regulator.
  • Can I file charity accounts online with Companies House?  Charitable companies cannot currently file full audited accounts online. Charitable companies must file their accounts at Companies House on paper or by using third party software.
  • Do charities have to file accounts with HMRC?  If a charity must file a tax return if it has income that does not qualify for tax relief or HMRC asks for one.
  • What is the deadline for filing charity accounts? The deadline for filing your annual charity accounts and returns is 10 calendar months after your financial year end date.

Charity Trading FAQs

  • Can a charity trade? Charities may carry on trading activities which contribute directly to the furtherance of their charitable objects, or (where the purpose is to raise funds for the charity) which do not involve significant risk.
  • What is charity trading? Your charity is trading if it sells goods or services to customers. There are rules on what types of activities count as trading and these depend on a number of factors, including the number, nature and frequency of goods or services being sold, the charity’s intention and presence or absence of a profit motive.
  • Do charities pay tax on trading? Your charity will not pay tax on profits it makes from trading that is part of your charity’s primary purpose or which helps your charity’s primary purpose.  You may have to pay tax on the profits from trading that has nothing to do with your primary purpose but not if your turnover from this type of trading is below the small trading tax exemption limit.

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These Resources Do Not Constitute Professional Opinion

I have worked in the sector at senior level for many years and hold various professional qualifications but am not an accountant, nor a lawyer and no advice can be applicable to all organisations, in all circumstances, so this resource is no more than a guide to understanding.  Essentially, I've summarised the wide ranging and detailed regulatory guidance and augmented this with my own experience and Internet research to create a layman's guide, with links to the source guidance. I hope you found it useful, but I am not competent to provide professional advice.  If you need it, use Help Finder to find pro bono support.

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