The Registrar of Incorporated Societies does not require that the financial statements of Incorporated Societies or Charitable Trusts are audited or reviewed. However, the organisation’s rules may require an auditor or reviewer to be appointed.
Many societies and trusts find the cost of auditing (or even of reviewing – i.e. a lesser financial check) expensive given the level of their assets, so may decide not to include, or to remove, the requirement for audit or review.
The Registrar has provided some guidance in respect of wording for the various options in an incorporated society’s rules. These can be found in para 20 of the sample rules. There is no similar guidance in respect of charitable trusts, but the same principles apply.
Financial statements must be filed with the Registrar annually unless the trust/society is also a Registered NZ Charity in which case the reporting requirements of DIA Charities must be followed and no return is required to the Registrar..
Registered charities with total operating expenditure of less than $500,000 are not required by law to have an audit or review. However, the rules (e.g. trust deed, constitution, or charter) may require an audit or review, or one may be required as a condition of receiving a grant. These charities may choose who performs the task; it may not need to be a qualified auditor unless stated in your rules.