Close or merge a charity

Closing a charity

If your charity is to close, you’ll need to let us know so we can remove it from the Register of Charities. In most cases this is all you have to do, and our online application form makes this quick and easy. You do not need to send us any other documents unless we ask you for them.

However, if your charity has investments or land you’ll need to make sure that you’ve considered what will happen to them.

Dealing with investments

If your charity has investments that can only be spent in certain circumstances (‘permanent endowment’) you will need to either remove this restriction or transfer the permanent endowment to another charity. Our guidance on removing or transferring permanent endowment provides more information.

Dealing with land

If your charity owns land that can only be used for the charity’s purposes, you should tell us what you are planning to do with it.


Merging with another charity

If you’ve decided that merging with another charity is the best way of meeting your current and future beneficiaries’ needs, in most cases where one of the charities is to close simply complete the following form for that charity so we can update the Register of Charities.

The majority of mergers don’t need our consent because a charity’s rules (its governing document) usually gives trustees the power to merge with other charities.

We must be involved if your charity does not have the power it needs or if its governing document states that our consent is necessary. You should contact us in the first instance.

If you want to voluntarily register your charity merger to help future legacies to a closed charity find their way to its successor, or you are required to register the merger because you have used a 'Vesting Declaration' you can then notify us of the merger by completing our online application form.

We have produced the following publications that you will find useful in managing a merger:


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