The Charity Commission has published new guidance to examiners urging them to be vigilant for charities misusing funds during the coronavirus pandemic.
Independent examiners review the accounts of those charities with incomes below a quarter of a million.
In particular, the guidance says that examiners need to ensure that charities do not incorrectly spend restricted funding due to pressures caused by the pandemic.
The guidance also says that examiners should ensure that a charity’s activities to address the impacts of COVID-19 are still in line with its charitable purpose; where they are found to have acted outside this, then they should have received consent either form their donor or from the Charity Commission.
Nigel Davies, the assistant director of accountancy services at the Charity Commission, said: “We hope this new guidance will support independent examiners. It provides practical advice on how they can continue to carry out their important role reviewing charity accounts during the ongoing crisis.
“This guidance is part of the pragmatic regulatory approach we committed to from the start of the pandemic. We hope the advice will also be useful to trustees in helping the examiner undertake their work.”