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Thread: CAF Bank requesting governing document

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    CAF Bank requesting governing document

    Hi all,
    I've had a request from CAF asking for documents to comply with Money Laundering regs (I guess others must have had this too?).

    One thing they ask for is a copy of our 'governing document'. I'm not sure what this would be, I couldn't find anything in a search of the POR or threads here. Are we supposed to have one for the Group, or is there one at an HQ level that covers us all?

    I've only been Treasurer with the Group for a few years so it may be something I've just never seen, but if I don't have it I don't think anyone else in the group will!

    Thanks,
    Aimee

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    AESL & AGSL shiftypete's Avatar
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    It's your Group constitution, which unless you have adopted a specific one is the ideal one given in POR (Rule 3.23 IIRC)

    Peter Andrews AESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Assistant Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
    www.falkonerscouts.org.uk

    Wike, North Leeds District Campsite - www.wikecampsite.org.uk
    www.leeds-solar.co.uk
    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

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    Why is it nothing ever changes with the Banks - they must have hundreds of Scout related accounts - we are all governed by POR

    Of course we are governed ultimately by our Royal Charter - you could refer them to that - perhaps that will stop them asking stupid questions?
    see https://members.scouts.org.uk/docume...heSerif%29.pdf
    A week of camp life is worth six months of theoretical teaching in the meeting room. Baden-Powell

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    a quiver full of barbs merryweather's Avatar
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    The banks are required to check your scout group's legal status - you may be a bogus group! - in relation to operating a bank a/c, the ubiquitous regulations regarding money laundering, stupid question or not.

    technically...

    the vast majority of TSA groups are required, as a consequence of association, to adopt TSA's royal charter (1912 &c) as their governing document. each charity must have a governing document as defined by the various charity acts.

    note: it is NOT 'our governing document', as in belonging to a scout group. it is only 'ours' because of 'adoption'. the royal charter enacts the various byelaws and articles of TSA, which include the rules in POR. As shifty correctly says you must follow the model constitution in POR 3.23 unless your group has a pre-existing one. (joint scout and guide groups are one example where there might be a difference but any differences are usually minor.)

    all you should need to do is 'refer' the bank to the 1912 royal charter of the scout association which enacts POR and in your case (unless you're different!) defines the model constitution in POR 3.23 as your group's constitution. the 'official' version of POR is defined to be the current online version at scouts.org.uk/por

    my group's annual report and accounts each year have some simple constitutional statements at the beginning where we detail trustees and their appointment and such like. for example: 'The members of the Group Executive Committee are deemed Trustees of 273rd Auchtermuchty Scout Group Council by the Charity Commissioners. The Charity is an excepted charity for the advancement of education and is acknowledged and understood to be for public benefit by the trustees. The Constitution is in accordance with Rule 3.23 of the Policy, Organisation & Rules of The Scout Association and all other applicable amendments and additions currently in force as directed and published by The Board of Trustees of The Scout Association, March 2017 under its governing document, the Royal Charter (granted 1912), which the group has adopted.

    ...or some such like. (The current version of POR is dated March 2017.)

    we then just pass over a copy of our report and accounts, which should then have all the details they need.

    i have heard banks request a paper copy of POR! (sad!)

    HTH

    TM
    Last edited by merryweather; 07-12-2017 at 07:38 AM.
    going...going...still here...just

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    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by biscuitbob View Post
    Hi all,
    I've had a request from CAF asking for documents to comply with Money Laundering regs (I guess others must have had this too?).

    One thing they ask for is a copy of our 'governing document'. I'm not sure what this would be, I couldn't find anything in a search of the POR or threads here. Are we supposed to have one for the Group, or is there one at an HQ level that covers us all?

    I've only been Treasurer with the Group for a few years so it may be something I've just never seen, but if I don't have it I don't think anyone else in the group will!

    Thanks,
    Aimee

    Hi Aimee,

    You have been the treasurer with the group for a few years. (your words) You don't know what the governing document is.

    This is basic information that everyone taking on a Trustee role should/ must be made aware of and they should/ must read and inwardly digest. It may well be that you are performing your role as Treasurer and Trustee correctly, by default, and that may be fine. However, if you do not know what your governing document/ constitution is, how can you be sure that the actions of the Trustees are appropriate?

    Please do not take this personally, it is a symptom of people stepping up to "help out the scouts". It is something that I get a bee in my bonnet about (as others will attest to). When we step in to a Trustee role at a Scout Group (or any charity) we take on certain roles and responsibilities. We should be aware of them and we should be aware of the rules and the consequences of ignorance of those rules.

    You ideal constitution can be found in the Group chapter of POR, all members of the Exec should have read it and have agreed to it, (adopted it). It is good practice to re-adopt annually to ensure that new members understand their role. However, it is not quite a stand alone constitution as the District has some input (marginal though it may be) and the District Chapter of POR and the District Constitution should also be understood (at least). For the pedants, a knowledge of the County section is also useful.

    Some years ago, when I was made GSL, I thought that I had better familiarise myself with POR. I started with the Group section, and then realised that I needed to also read the basics, and the District section. One stone uncovered led to a need to read another chapter. By the time I had finished I had read the whole thing from cover to cover plus dozens of Factsheets ( information sheets as they are now known).

    On opening a Group bank account with any bank they will go through the process of checking. When signatories change they do the same checks again (our bank did). If you open a second account, they do the same again, and for every other account that you might open. If they don't then they could be opening an account that might be run to launder funds on behalf of some nefarious subversive body.
    Last edited by Bushfella; 07-12-2017 at 09:33 AM.
    Ewan Scott

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    In my experience, banks themselves (or more likely their employees) have little idea about charities. I recently opened a new account, the bank had no idea about excepted charities and helpfully offered the Scout Association charity number.

    If you contact TSA Legal Services, you can obtain an official letter specific to your group which helpfully explains the full circumstances:

    To Whom It May Concern

    Dear Sirs,

    Re: XXXX Scout Group
    The Scout Association (TSA) Registered Charity No: 306101

    We write to confirm that the above Group is a registered scout unit with TSA under Registration number xxxx.

    By way of background, TSA is a national charity incorporated under Royal Charter which, amongst other matters, enables Scout Units to register themselves so that they can operate officially. TSA also provides them with training, guidance and rules to abide by. These rules are found in our Policy, Organisation and Rules (POR) which can be accessed at http://www.scouts.org.uk/supportresources/71. Where relevant, POR also provides scout units with a Constitution.

    Importantly, all Scout Units registered with TSA are set up as independent charities. TSA has no responsibility for the management of Scout Units, its land or affairs: this is and remains the responsibility of the local Executive Committee who are the Charity Trustees of the Scout Unit. Whilst TSA is sometimes referred to as an Umbrella Organisation for scouting, we are not the 'Parent Organisation' of Scout Units due to our limited role. Please note, Scout Units are not permitted to use or represent TSA's charity registration number as their own in any circumstances.

    As you may already be aware and by way of confirmation, not all charities have to be registered with the Charity Commission in order to be classed as a charity and, in the particular case of Scout Units there is an exception whereby registration is not mandatory unless the likely income of the Unit is 100,000 p.a. or more or they own certain types of land/property interests. Some Scout Units choose to register on a voluntary basis which is purely a matter for them. However, in this matter, although the above Scout Unit may not be registered with the Charity Commission, it is nevertheless still a charity within its own right.

    We hope the above is useful and please do not hesitate to contact us if you require anything further.
    Note that the Royal Charter is the constitution of TSA, not the constitution of individual Scout groups, although some use it as a shorthand for using the default constitution as written in POR.

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    CTCSL / GSL sitb2000's Avatar
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    I had this problem with CAF.

    The Governing Document they are referring to is the one referenced on the Charity Commission page (if you are a registered charity), for my group it says:
    Governing document: ROYAL CHARTER DATED 4 JANUARY 1912 AND SUPPLEMENTAL CHARTERS DATED 28 MARCH 1949, 18 FEBRUARY 1959, 5 MAY 1967 AND 19 JULY 1991

    Then, refereed them to the royal charter here:
    https://members.scouts.org.uk/docume...0TheSerif).pdf
    Simon Parr
    Group Scout Leader - 1st Nanpantan Scouts
    County Cub Scout Leader - Leicestershire Scouts

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    Senior Moments Penny E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    Hi Aimee,

    You have been the treasurer with the group for a few years. (your words) You don't know what the governing document is.

    This is basic information that everyone taking on a Trustee role should/ must be made aware of and they should/ must read and inwardly digest. It may well be that you are performing your role as Treasurer and Trustee correctly, by default, and that may be fine. However, if you do not know what your governing document/ constitution is, how can you be sure that the actions of the Trustees are appropriate?
    Oh, c'mon, Ewan! Stop beating Aimee up!

    I was asked the self-same question by CAF Bank last year, and even I (who have read POR comprehensively more times than I can count) had to check with Gilwell as to what was considered to be our "governing document" in banking terms.

    Aimee, the answer is: "The Policy, Organisation & Rules of the Scout Association, version dated March 2017." That was entirely acceptable to them, although I think alternatives may be available, such as those Simon suggests.
    Akela, 1st Tylers Hill

    Yes, those are my legs - and my hiking boots too!

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    I was going to say that I'd just send them POR...
    SL, 11th Hitchin

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    Can you not ask another trustee for a copy of your governing doc or if they dont have it you can request a copy from the charity commission I believe.

    I would have thought it best / essential to make sure you know what it is rather than assuming.

    Sent from my F8331 using Tapatalk

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