Trust Registration Documents
A trust is an agreement between people (called trustees) to manage property over which they have control either to benefit other people (called beneficiaries) or for charitable purposes. A groups of trustees may be incorporated as a board under the Charitable Trusts Act 1957 if the objects are charitable.
Some common characteristics of trusts incorporated under the Charitable Trust Act 1957 are:
- has a board of at least two trustees;
- must have charitable purposes;
- has its trustees make the major decisions;
is set up under a trust deed which outlines how it operates;
- often has more limited community or member involvement than incorporated societies;
- its assets can be used to meet its debts, but if it is incorporated and trustees have acted responsibly, they are unlikely to be personally liable;
- Trustees are generally not accountable in specific ways unless the deed specifically set these out;
- it can be legally wound up at any time, unless a specific term for its existence has been stipulated in the trust deed (more common in private Trusts);
- it needs to be registered separately with the IRD to be exempt from payment of tax.
List of documents required to register a charitable trust
- Original Trust Deed or a certified copy.
- Application for Incorporation of Trustees as a Board The application must be signed by the majority of trustees.
- Statutory Declaration. The statutory declaration states: whether any Trustees hold any property as trustees for other trusts; that at a meeting of the Trust a resolution was passed approving incorporation; and that the person making the Declaration has been approved by the Trustees to make it.
- You also need to provide the Companies Office with a registered office. Your registered address must be a street address. A postal address may be provided in addition to this.
Steps to registering a charitable trust
As outlined below in the Flow-chart of steps to registering a charitable trust, once you have decided to set up a charitable trust you need to:
- Develop a set of rules. The Charitable Trust sample rules and guide in the Template section of this How-to Guide give a useful example of trust deed clauses and what they mean.
- Complete the other documentation listed below. These can be printed off and completed by hand.
- Obtain approval for the deed as outlined in the following flow-chart.