Since April 2002 many local amateur sports clubs have been able to register with the Inland Revenue (IR) as Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) and benefit from a range of tax relief, including Gift Aid.
Many of the clubs of BSAC have "interests" that are probably liable to Council tax. The interests usually take the form of either a clubhouse or a boat store or equipment store.
The government, through the IR, is prepared to accept that amateur sports clubs, like BSAC, make a valuable contribution to the community and should be rewarded as such. The IR is prepared to give an 80% mandatory relief from Council Tax. In order to qualify for this 80% relief it is necessary for the club to be registered as a Community Amateur Sports Club [CASC]. This Note sets out the necessary steps to achieve registration.
The CASC registration form and helpful guidance notes can be downloaded direct from the IR website.
Completed registration forms should be returned to Charities, Savings and International 2, HM Revenue and Customs, BX9 1BU, United Kingdom, with the following documents:
- A copy of the club governing document
- A copy of the latest accounts
- A copy of any handbook or rule book issued to members
The most significant area of change for a BSAC branch will most probably be the restructuring of its Bye-laws (the governing document). This is because the IR requires a "Constitution" and also that existing bye-laws do not reflect required CASC model clauses.
The model clauses can be downloaded from the IR website.
Example of an integrated clause based on a successful application:
- Objectives - Original
The aims and objectives of the club shall be to provide for its members facilities, opportunity, and training for diving in accordance with the standards of BSAC, together with related social activities.
- Objectives - Revised (changes highlighted)
The aims and objectives of the club shall be to promote the amateur sport of sub-aqua diving in Bristol and its environs and community participation in the same; and, to provide for its members facilities, opportunity, and training for diving in accordance with the standards of BSAC, together with related social activities.
When applying for registration, clubs are advised to first submit the revised "Constitution & Bye-laws" to the IR in draft (with the integrated model clauses clearly identified). This then allows the IR to agree that the changes are acceptable. Once agreed with the IR the club is then in a position to hold a Special General Meeting for its membership to formally approve the changes. Once done, a copy of the new 'Constitution and Bye-Laws' certified 'True Copy' by two committee members is necessary for final acceptance of the application by the IR.
In order to qualify for the 80% mandatory relief from Council tax, clubs must be CASC registered. At first it does seem somewhat complicated to achieve registration but by following the above guidelines it is reasonably straightforward and painless.
It may be possible to achieve a future discretionary relief on the remaining 20% of liability for Council Tax. This will be dependent on the particular Local Authority and the clubs participating in the community. If you require further information please contact the BSAC Membership Department on 0151 350 6201 or Email.