About the Charities Act 2011

The Charities Act 2011 came into effect on 14 March 2012. It is the Act of Parliament which sets out how all charities in England and Wales are registered and regulated.

It replaces:

  • most of the Charities Acts 1992, 1993 and 2006
  • all of the Recreational Charities Act 1958

It doesn’t replace the sections in the Charities Acts about fundraising which haven’t taken effect yet, eg charitable collections in public places.

The 2011 Act is intended to make the law easier to understand by replacing four Acts of Parliament with one. It doesn’t make any changes to the law. Nearly 500 web pages and PDFs on this website have been updated to refer to the 2011 Act rather than previous Acts.

Your charity doesn’t have to do anything differently except, in instances where you would have referred to earlier Acts, to now refer to the Charities Act 2011 in documents, reports, accounts or statements produced on or after 14 March 2012 (even if they relate to an earlier financial period).

However, your documents will still be valid even if you accidentally refer to earlier Acts. You don’t have to go back and change any documents you have already finalised before 14 March 2012.