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Charities Act 2006

Commentary on Sections

Section 19 – Power to suspend or remove trustees etc. from membership of charity

75.This section inserts into the 1993 Act a new section 18A, which applies when the Charity Commission – at any time after it has started a statutory inquiry into a charity – makes an order suspending or removing from office any trustee, charity trustee, officer, agent or employee of a charity who is also a member of that charity.

76.In some cases under the present law, a person who has been suspended or removed from office can use his membership of the charity to help vote himself back into, or reacquire in other ways, the office from which he has been suspended or removed. The Act gives the Commission power to prevent this by:

  • (subsection (2) of section 18A) allowing it also to suspend the membership of someone whom it was suspending from office. The person’s suspension from membership would last as long as his suspension from office; or

  • (subsection (3) of section 18A) allowing it also to terminate the membership of someone whom it was removing from office and to prohibit that person from taking up his membership again without the Commission’s agreement.

77.There is a presumption, in subsection (4) of section 18A, that a person should be entitled to take up his membership again five years after it was terminated. That presumption can be overturned only if there are special circumstances.

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