The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland was set up in 2009. One of its key functions is to maintain a register of charities.
An organisation must apply for registration as a charity in Northern Ireland, regardless of its income, size or whether or not it has received charitable tax status from HMRC, if:
- it has exclusively charitable purposes
- it is governed by the law of Northern Ireland
- it is an institution, that is, it is an organisation that is an independent body, the hallmarks of which include having control and direction over its governance and resources.
The Commission is able to provide detailed guidance on the registration process.