step 1 - get startedstep 2 - make a planstep 3 - decide on membershipstep 4 - decide on charitable statusstep 5 - consider the risksstep 6 - decide on a structurestep 7 - write your constitutionstep 8 - next steps

Register your new organisation with the appropriate body, before getting on with the business of running your not-for-profit.

Once you have developed your plan, decided on a structure and written your constitution, your new voluntary organisation will soon be able to get on with your intended work.

There are a few important tasks to remember at this point in the process.

Registering your organisation

If you are setting up a company you will need to register it with Companies House.

If you are registering a Scottish Charity you will need to apply to OSCR for charitable status and then HMRC in order to take advantage of the tax benefits of charitable status.

When applying to HMRC, you should quote the charity number and enclose a copy of the charity registration letter – asking HMRC Charities to confirm that the organisation will have the benefit of charitable tax relief. You will not be able to take advantage of any tax relief available to charities until you have received confirmation from HMRC.

Publicising your charitable status

All external documents and communications and your website homepage must state your charity’s name and Scottish Charity number. OSCR provides detailed information on how to fulfil this duty.

If you are a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation, OSCR provides additional advice on how to refer to your name and status. If your organisation is incorporated, company law sets out rules about how you must publicise your legal status on business communications, in your offices, and on your website.

Running your organisation

Find a wide range of relevant information about running your organisation, including information on finances, business planning and employment.

Other support

Third Sector Interfaces are based across all of Scotland’s local authority areas. They exist to support, promote, develop and represent the third sector. You can find your nearest TSI using the directory on the Voluntary Action Scotland website.

Ongoing practical support from SCVO

SCVO membership offers your organisation information and advice, helps you to make the best use of your resources, to make connections, enables learning and development, and provides opportunities for you to network and influence.

SCVO services and deals offer a wide range of discounts, deals and services to help you run your organisation, including discounts on IT equipment, specialist insurance packages and access to free legal advice.

Join us now!