The monthly round-up from the Anthony Collins Solicitors charities team.
The specific requirement in the Standard is: -
“To maintain a thorough, accurate and up to date record of their assets and liabilities and particularly those liabilities that may have recourse to social housing assets” (Paragraph 1.5.1(a))
The accompanying Code will require liabilities to be “in the widest context” and that is hardly surprising given the tale of woe apparent from the Cosmopolitan saga. There is no prescribed format, nor a list of what is to go in – it is all up to each provider, or to be specific, each board, since the Code states that the Regulator expects the Board to oversee the Asset Register.
In our view clients should be considering the following areas: -
|Property (understand property as an asset)||Finance (cashflow etc)|
|Planning (making sure conditions are complied with and you have evidence to that effect)||Title (the need to link with development)|
|Regulatory (known and anticipated potential impacts)||Loans (treasury management etc)|
There is a clear risk of a compliance industry being created here but we are not talking about a requirement for some all-encompassing database/spreadsheet; what we are talking about is for providers to have this information up to date, accurate, and at hand – and crucially to see it not just in the light of a compliance requirement but as an essential business tool fundamentally informing the VfM agenda. And to underline the point the Code provides that assets which have a negative impact should be easily identifiable.
Another way of looking at things is to consider if you were working for another provider and rescuing your organisation what would you need? What would the Regulator want to see if they ever had to intervene? What do you want to see when you are purchasing properties from another provider?
Finally the asset register needs to scope up all that company information that the board needs to be able to make decisions; what are the cross group guarantees; what off balance sheet funding is there; what dependencies are there.
Don’t forget that boards will need regularly (at least annually) updating.
For more information
In this ebriefing, we identify what we see as the key messages arising from recent prosecutions in the care and housing sectors.
A recent High Court case on costs could prove essential reading for clients who have cases in the magistrates' courts.
The employment and pensions team offer practical advice on whistleblowing.
Partners, David Alcock and Sarah Patrice, have been involved in reviewing the new Code of Governance for community-led housing, published on 21 May 2021 by the Confederation for Coop Housing.
Following the eviction ban being lifted on 31 May 2021 and further to our previous ebriefing, the new notice of seeking possession forms are now available on the Government website as Word versions.
The European Court of Justice's standpoint on the Wiener Wohnen landowning developer case, and how the level of influence over the work did not amount to a decisive influence.
The Law Commission's Technical Issues in Charity Law report revealed that many charities struggle with a range of technical issue in the law.
The Law Commission recommended four key changes to the law in respect of mergers and the incorporation of charities which we have detailed in this ebriefing.
Over the last few weeks, we have published individual ebriefings on some of the key changes to be implemented following the Government’s response to the Law Commission’s report.
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