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SCVO becomes a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation

SCVO becomes a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations () has adopted a new legal structure and become a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO). This structure allows Scottish charities to become corporate bodies, and benefit from limited liability, without being subject to company law.

An SCIO is a legal entity which can enter into contracts, employ staff, incur debts, own property, sue and be sued. Designed specifically for Scottish charities, it helps simplify their regulatory reporting: unlike charities that are companies limited by guarantee, SCIOs have the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator () as a single regulator.

According to OSCR, 1,172 charities in have registered as SCIO’s.

Lucy McTernan, Deputy Chief Executive, SCVO said:

“Being a charity is all about changing people’s lives for the better and there’s a lot more to that than purely meeting financial obligations. This specialised structure for charities takes this into account and means that even the smallest charity can enjoy the benefits of incorporation, including limited liability, without having to comply with company law.”


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The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is the national body representing the interests of charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises.  The Scottish third sector turns over £4.9 billion a year and employs 138,000 people in over 45,000 organisations.



Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp.

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