Charities Act 2006

The Charities Act 2006 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom intended to alter the regulatory framework in which charities operate, partly by amending the Charities Act 1993. The Act was mostly superseded by the Charities Act 2011, which consolidates charity law in the UK.


The Act contains three main provisions: definition of the requirements to qualify as a charity, the establishment of a Charity Tribunal to hear appeals from decisions of the Charity Commission, and alterations to the requirements for registering charities.

Charitable status

The Act imposes conditions on bodies wishing to attain or maintain charitable status.
For the purposes of the law, a charitable organisation must demonstrate that it serves the public interest, and that its purpose lies entirely in the promotion of one or more of the following causes:
Prior to 2008, the law assumed that advancement of education or religion were automatically in the public interest. A "public benefit" now needs to be demonstrated.

Charity Tribunal

The Act established a "Charity Tribunal" to hear appeals from decisions of the Charity Commission, which previously lay only to the High Court. The Tribunal was abolished in September 2009 and its functions transferred to the First-tier Tribunal.


The Act raises the threshold above which registration is required with the Charity Commission from £1,000 to £5,000. This is intended to reduce administration costs for small charities. In addition, charities which fall under certain exempted categories under the 1993 Act are now only exempted if their gross annual income is less than £100,000.

Section 79 - Commencement

The following orders have been made under section 79: