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  • Overview

    Property law advice for charities

    Dealings with land by a charity are subject to special rules.

    Many charities own freehold or leasehold property. Legal advice is essential for any dealings with property, and there are additional requirements and procedures for property owned by charities. It is vital that charities are aware of these and follow the requirements.

    We can advise on:

    • Charity land – this is defined as land held by, or on a trust for a charity and also any buildings and structures on it
    • Acquiring charity land – there are specific and detailed requirements for charities wishing to buy or acquire land
    • Dealings with charity land – all dealings with charity land must be appointed for what is in the best interest of the charity
    • Sales or longer leases – there are requirements for advice from a qualified surveyor, the process of marketing the property and a written report
    • Short-term disposals – a lease for seven years or less would require only a report from someone with the ability and experience to advise the charity competently
    • Charity Commission orders – a formal order of the Commission will be needed where s.36 cannot be complied with or the disposal is to a connected person
    • Mortgages of charity land – charities cannot mortgage land without complying with the statutory requirements
    • Permanent endowment – land held permanently for use by the charity cannot be freely disposed of and advice is needed on what is possible for trustees.

    For further information please contact one of the team.

  • Related Client Stories

    Termination of allotment land

    We acted for a national charity on the rights of allotment holders occupying land needed by Charity for further development and taking steps to secure possession of the allotment land.  In isolation, the plots seem of little importance.  However, unless possession is secured, the significant planned development cannot proceed.   The development is being funded by a substantial government grant, which adds another level of urgency and complexity.  The lead Real Estate Litigation lawyer is Mark Steggles and the process is ongoing.

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