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(1)Subsection (2) below applies to a financial year of a charity (“the relevant year”) if the charity’s gross income or total expenditure in any of the following, namely—
(a)the relevant year,
(b)the financial year of the charity immediately preceding the relevant year (if any), and
(c)the financial year of the charity immediately preceding the year specified in paragraph (b) above (if any),
(2)If this subsection applies to a financial year of a charity, the accounts of the charity for that year shall be audited by a person who—
(a)is, in accordance with section 25 of the M1Companies Act 1989 (eligibility for appointment), eligible for appointment as a company auditor, or
(b)is a member of a body for the time being specified in regulations under section 44 below and is under the rules of that body eligible for appointment as auditor of the charity.
(3)If subsection (2) above does not apply to a financial year of a charity [F2and its gross income or total expenditure in that year exceeds £10,000], then (subject to subsection (4) below) the accounts of the charity for that year shall, at the election of the charity trustees, either—
(a)be examined by an independent examiner, that is to say an independent person who is reasonably believed by the trustees to have the requisite ability and practical experience to carry out a competent examination of the accounts, or
(b)be audited by such a person as is mentioned in subsection (2) above.
(4)Where it appears to the Commissioners—
(a)that subsection (2), or (as the case may be) subsection (3) above, has not been complied with in relation to a financial year of a charity within ten months from the end of that year, or
(b)that, although subsection (2) above does not apply to a financial year of a charity, it would nevertheless be desirable for the accounts of the charity for that year to be audited by such a person as is mentioned in that subsection,
the Commissioners may by order require the accounts of the charity for that year to be audited by such a person as is mentioned in that subsection.
(5)If the Commissioners make an order under subsection (4) above with respect to a charity, then unless—
(a)the order is made by virtue of paragraph (b) of that subsection, and
(b)the charity trustees themselves appoint an auditor in accordance with the order,
the auditor shall be a person appointed by the Commissioners.
(6)The expenses of any audit carried out by an auditor appointed by the Commissioners under subsection (5) above, including the auditor’s remuneration, shall be recoverable by the Commissioners—
(a)from the charity trustees of the charity concerned, who shall be personally liable, jointly and severally, for those expenses; or
(b)to the extent that it appears to the Commissioners not to be practical to seek recovery of those expenses in accordance with paragraph (a) above, from the funds of the charity.
(7)The Commissioners may—
(a)give guidance to charity trustees in connection with the selection of a person for appointment as an independent examiner;
(b)give such directions as they think appropriate with respect to the carrying out of an examination in pursuance of subsection (3)(a) above;
and any such guidance or directions may either be of general application or apply to a particular charity only.
(8)The Secretary of State may by order amend subsection (1) [F3or (3)] above by substituting a different sum for the sum for the time being specified there.
(9)Nothing in this section applies to a charity which is a company.
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