As an update to the long running saga of the changes to the rules on Community Amateur Sports Clubs, the legislation implementing the changes to the CASC rules announced by HMRC and, which have been consulted on for nearly two years, was enacted on 18th December 2014.
The new legislation will come into force from 1 April 2015 and will require many clubs to alter aspects of their membership structure or structure for provision of facilities and services to both members and non-members.
The new rules implement the key changes as had been expected and widely consulted upon, namely:
- The “Open to the Community” rules will require clubs, who have base membership fees of more than £520 annually, to provide new affordable membership options to persons on low incomes where that cost of participation will have to be less than £520 a year
- The “income condition” will require that clubs who generate more than £100,000 a year of turnover from trading income adapt their corporate structures to remain within the CASC rules. This turnover test will potentially impact on any club which has income being derived from bar sales, catering sales or fees for participation being charged to visitors such as green fees, court fees or charges to visiting parties
- The total limit for payments to players of £10,000 has been enacted as proposed.
How clubs should approach the changes
The key point with the new rules is that HMRC see the changes as positive – and we agree. Overall, the rule changes should provide positive financial support to clubs, but clubs may need to adapt to remain within the rules.
Clubs should not shy away from seeking to understand what the new rules require. The legislation is in force from 1 April 2015 but there will then be a 12 month “period of grace” in which clubs will be given time to implement any changes needed to comply with the rules going forward.
To help clubs adapt, HMRC will be contacting clubs to highlight the new rules. They are also willing to enter into correspondence about the changes a club needs to make and will provide a formal clearance process whereby a club can put forward the changes it will make to meet the new rules, and HMRC will provide formal “clearance” that the new club structure or membership options etc. will meet the requirements.
We believe clubs should try to meet the new requirements as the benefits in terms of the potential for additional fundraising, the business rate savings and the flexibility to help the clubs to expand –which are provided by the new rules – should be viewed as a compelling reason to try to seek to remain within the CASC regime.
The changes enable clubs to be put on a more secure footing in relation to compliance with the CASC regime and most clubs will already maintain the records they need to enable them to consider in detail what changes are needed, if any, to comply with the new rules.
We offer a free review for any club of the impact of the new rules on their specific club. The impact of the rules will be different for each organisation, but there are common themes within most major sports of what changes clubs typically need to make (if any) to remain within the CASC rules.
We have already assisted clubs across a range of sports to understand what they need to do to comply with the rules, to communicate the changes to their members and then implement those changes.
If you would like a free, no obligation consultation in relation to your club, please contact Alastair Wilson or Sara Andrews on 0191 285 0321 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com