Incorporated associations

Incorporated associations

Western Australia

WA Associations Incorporations Act 2015

Most community local sporting clubs are established as incorporated associations. Incorporation is a voluntary, simple and inexpensive means of establishing a legal entity, separate from the individual members.

In Western Australia, incorporated associations are governed under the Associated Incorporations Act 2015.

The Department of Commerce oversees the Associated Incorporations Act 2015 and provides a highly informative website for clubs who have registered or are considering registering as an incorporated association.

The Consumers and Business services webpage can be accessed here

The Department of Commerce also provide a fantastic Associations Incorporations introduction manual that contains a lot more detail than the summary below. The practice manual can be accessed here:

Or you can download the pdf version

The Department of Commerce has also created a simple checklist that provides a summary of the main obligations of a committee under the Act. It is not intended to cover every aspect of association governance but outlines the more important aspects.

Key Responsibilities

The Associated Incorporations Act 2015 provides registered clubs and associations with guidance and direction on the following topics:

  • Forming an incorporated association
  • Financial Reporting Requirements
  • Approval of auditor
  • Public officer responsibilities
  • Legislation for associations
  • Membership
  • Responsibilities for running a meeting
  • Appointment of office holders

The following information should be treated as a guide only. Your club should contact Commerce WA or seek advice specific to the needs of your club when considering its obligations under the Associations Incorporation Act 2015

ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING ( AGM)

  • An AGM must be held every year within six months after the end of the association’s financial year.

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

  • Committee members are required to disclose any material personal interests they have in matters being considered at meetings of the Association.

RULES OF ASSOCIATION

  • The association is required to keep an up-to-date copy of its rules.
  • The rules must include all of the matters required by Schedule 1 of the Act.

Each new member of the association is provided with their own copy of the rules when they join the association.

REGISTER OF MEMBERS

  • Must include the name of each member and a residential, postal or email address.
  • The Register of Members is updated to include any changes in membership within 28 days of the change occurring.
  • Members of the association are permitted to inspect and copy the register of members upon request.
  • The information obtained from the register of members can only be used for a purpose that is directly connected with the affairs of the association
  • An association’s rules may require the member to sign a statutory declaration prior to the register of members being made

For more information check out the Record Keeping chapter of the INC Guide.

OTHER RECORD KEEPING REQUIREMENTS

  • Record of office holders – record must include the name and address (residential, postal, business or email) for each member of the committee.
  • Certificate of Incorporation – if you need a replacement certificate an application can be submitted through Associations Online.
  • Inspection of records – members of the association are permitted to inspect and copy the record of office.
  • All records belonging to the association in the possession of an outgoing committee member are returned to the association as soon as practicable after their appointment ceases.

For more information check out the Record Keeping chapter of the INC Guide.

AMENDING THE RULES (CONSTITUTION)

  • Special resolution – resolution passed by 75% of members who vote at a general meeting that has been properly convened.
  • Lodging changes – the amended rules must be lodged with Consumer Protection within one month for the changes to have legal effect.
  • Notice of the Special Resolution can be submitted through Associations Online.

For more information check out the Altering the Rules chapter of the INC Guide.

ACCOUNTING RECORDS AND REPORTING

  • Associations must keep financial accounts that record and explain their transactions, position and performance.
  • Annual accounts must be presented to members at each AGM
  • The financial reporting requirements of an association will depend on what tier it falls into.

For more information about the requirements of each tier please refer to Transition Pack 1 available here

For more information about keeping your financial records check out the Accounts and Auditing chapter of the INC Guide.

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