Background of CASC
The Government introduced the CASC programme in 2002 as they recognised the important role played by sports clubs in local communities. CASC allows clubs to access many of the benefits of charitable status without the accompanying administrative responsibilities and replacing this with what is termed ‘light touch regulation’ for CASCs.
At present there are 580 football clubs registered as CASCs in the UK (Source: Tim Baldwin - Monthly analysis of CASC registrations) and it is estimated to be worth £1.7million of savings and income generation per annum.
What are the benefits?
The CASC scheme enables many local amateur sports clubs to register with the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and benefit from a range of tax reliefs, including receiving money through Gift Aid and business rate relief.
This means that as a CASC:-
• For every £1 raised in fundraising a club could receive an additional 25p through Gift Aid.
• If a club pays non domestic rates it will receive 80% mandatory rate relief.
• The club is exempt from corporation tax if a club generates a trading turnover of less than £30K.
• Individuals do not pay inheritance tax on donations to the club.
• JustGiving have waived the £180 annual registration fee for all CASC football clubs allowing them fundraise and receive gift aid through their online fundraising processes.
What are the restrictions?
• Clubs can’t pay players other than away travel expenses, so this is not appropriate for clubs paying players or wishing to progress up through the National League System in the future.
• Members can’t financially benefit from the club, any profits have to be reinvested in to the club.
• Once a CASC always a CASC (unless in exceptional circumstances, for example, conversion to a charity).
Registering as a CASC
Clubs have to register with HMRC to become a CASC but they need to evidence and demonstrate that they comply with the criteria of being a CASC through their constitution. At present 90% of all CASC applications across all sports are initially rejected as their constitution isn’t CASC compliant.
The main areas that have to be identified in the club constitution are:
• It must promote amateur sports participation.
• It must have an open membership.
• It must not pay any of its players other than expenses to away games.
• It reinvests any profits in to the club rather than pay its members.
• The dissolution clause states any surplus profits must be reinvested in to another CASC, Charity or The Governing Body of Sport (The FA).
In addition to the above they have to nominate person(s) who are classed as fit and proper.
The FA and HMRC have agreed a set of CASC Compliant Suggested Club Rules which are available below to download.
CASC Support Helpline
A CASC helpline for FA Charter Standard Clubs has been established and will be available from October 2011 for clubs. The details of the helpline are: CASChelp@TheFA.com or tel: 01494 730059.
- CASC Top Ten Hints
- Tax Relief for subscriptions to CASC
- Fit & Proper Person Helpsheet
- Charity & Tax Sheet
- Helpline Flyer
- CASC Compliant Suggested FA Club Rules
- Final Business Rates Benefits to LA and Sports Clubs
- Gift Aid for single donation
- Gift Aid for past, present and future donations
- Gift Aid sponsorship form
- Charities and Gift Aid HMRC Interpretation