As part of my work as a prospect researcher, I frequently request copies of governing documents from the Charity Commission. However, I have just been told by the Charity Commission that as I "have requested multiple copies of governing documents", I can no longer expect to receive the documents within the normal 15 day turnaround. They can still meet my request, but it may be some weeks before they do so. I have no idea how long that might be. I have been told that the Charity Commission has communicated this change in their practice to “several banks and another company apparently undertaking similar work" to me. The Charity Commission advised me to contact the charity rather than face the delays resulting from making such a request to the Commission. Past experience tells me that this will not always prove successful.
Have any other researchers (or e.g. trust fundraisers) been told the same thing? If money is tight, why doesn’t the Charity Commission run a practice similar to e.g. Companies House Direct, whereby we pay £1 per document?
It is very inconvenient that the Charity Commission has introduced this change of practice with no warning whatsoever. Hopefully, it will only apply to nuisances like me who regularly research newly registered trusts, each month, but who knows?
I wonder how this new practice sits with their responsibilities under the Freedom of Information Act?
Finbar Cullen, ResearchPlus
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