Getting ready for Open Churches Week 2017
Changes to the wording of Gift Aid Declarations
The new Gift Aid declaration wording is to be used from April 6 2016. You will need to amend your declaration for planned givers and also buy new one-off Gift Aid envelopes. The new declaration will apply to all new donations; declarations that are already in place do not need to be updated. A Guide to Declarations and Envelopes has been produced and full guidance and a checklist of actions needed can be found at: www.parishresources.org.uk/giftaid
Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme
The Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme (GASDS) allows parishes to claim a Gift-Aid style repayment to be received on small cash donations of £20 or less up to a threshold of £5,000 of donated income per year per church. (The threshold will rise to £8,000 from April 2016).
There are improvements as to how many parishes can use the Small Donations Scheme following HMRC's agreement that parishes are not connected under the scheme - and there are different implications for single church parishes and parishes with multiple churches. PCCs with a single church can now claim on the top-up element of the scheme, they will not need to worry about numbers attending and can also include wall safe donations. PCCs with multiple churches will continue to use the Community Buildings rules unless they are small and the aggregate of their eligible donations is less than £5,000 rising to £8,000 when they can also use the top-up element.
If you are a PCC with a single church, you should now use the Top Up element of the scheme – use the guidance for single church parishes (This will also apply if you have more than one church in the parish, but your eligible donations in total are not more than the £5,000 limit).
If your PCC has more than one church, you should continue to use the Community Buildings element of the scheme and use the guidance for multi-church parishes. If you have a church plant, or run services in other buildings, there is an additional guide to GASDS and Church Plants.
GASDS is claimed alongside Gift Aid using the same processes. These changed in 2013, and there is guidance on each of the three possible routes to claim here.
Full details on the new GASDS guidance can be found at: www.parishresources.org.uk/giftaid/smalldonations/