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Legal struggles for third sector examined

Legal struggles for third sector examined

A survey of charities, churches, foundations and community organisations has been launched to gain an understanding of the legal and governance challenges faced by not-for-profit organisations.…

A survey of charities, churches, foundations and community organisations has been launched to gain an understanding of the legal and governance challenges faced by not-for-profit organisations.

As the third sector becomes an increasingly significant player in the Australian economy, the legal landscape for not-for-profits is becoming more and more complex. Commissioned by Makinson & d'Apice Lawyers, the survey coincides with the Commonwealth Government's recently announced plans to establish a not-for-profit regulator.

"This research will take the temperature on stakeholder views. It will canvas a cross-section of opinion on the legal and governance issues with which not-for-profits must grapple," said managing partner, Nancy Bramley-Moore. "This is an important opportunity for diverse third sector leaders and stakeholders to have their say about [the] many challenges they confront."

The study will focus on five key areas, including governance, planning and funding, trusts and bequests, business management and stakeholder engagement. It will canvas several thousand not-for-profit executives, board members and other leaders from a wide variety of organisations and interest groups in Australia.

"Changes to funding, legal pressures and governance problems are making far-reaching changes in this sector," Bramley-Moore said.

"We want to find out what leaders think about the legal landscape and governance, what they fear, where they see opportunities and what they want to see happen in the third sector."

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