Changing or ending your organisation

Inevitably, things will change for organisations over time. Sometimes these changes have legal significance.

Changing or ending your organisation
There are legal issues to consider at each stage in the life-cycle of a not-for-profit, especially when things change or end. This video explains the processes involved in ending an organisation, which depend on the location and the size of the organisation.

This topic looks at some of the legal issues that community organisations should think about when things change (or preferably before things change). Topics covered include legal issues to consider when:

  • changing your organisation's constitution or rules
  • changing your organisation's legal structure (for incorporated associations)
  • working with other organisations (including auspicing agreements, joint ventures agreements, and memoranda of understanding)
  • amalgamating/merging with another organisation (or many), and
  • ending an organisation (either voluntarily or compulsorily).

Changes may be needed when small, locally-focused community organisations have opportunities to operate interstate - this may require a change in legal structure. An organisation's fundraising and other activities may grow to a point where they decide to apply for Deductible Gift Recipient taxation status, and need to amend their constitution, and sometimes organisations find that there is no longer a need for their existence and decide to wind-up or  merge with another not-for-profit organisation.