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Unincorporated commission

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Am I liable as part of an unincorporated commission when I didn’t know that I was joining one? I thought I was volunteering at local kids club charity committee (in Scotland ) to help out and was not aware of any legal or financial obligations? At point of joining I was asked by the manager to volunteer as they needed a committee to function and she advised ‘you only need to attend a couple of meetings a year’ as a description of my duties. The manager has since deceased and the kids club has been winding down. A professional childcare company are taking over the childcare provision at the school but now I’ve been asked to pay hundreds towards a tax bill? I’m so confused- this kids club has been around since 1995, I have only been involved in for the past year or so and had no idea what I had agreed to? I have never signed anything, or been provided with any information about financial responsibilities. I thought I would be making cakes to to help fundraise! I had a very different vision of what I was getting involved with. I haven’t been involved in financial decisions or the day to day running of the club. 
help! Any advice gratefully received  

Comments

  • Undervalued
    Undervalued Posts: 8,882 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    edited 9 January 2023 at 10:00AM
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    Am I liable as part of an unincorporated commission when I didn’t know that I was joining one? I thought I was volunteering at local kids club charity committee (in Scotland ) to help out and was not aware of any legal or financial obligations? At point of joining I was asked by the manager to volunteer as they needed a committee to function and she advised ‘you only need to attend a couple of meetings a year’ as a description of my duties. The manager has since deceased and the kids club has been winding down. A professional childcare company are taking over the childcare provision at the school but now I’ve been asked to pay hundreds towards a tax bill? I’m so confused- this kids club has been around since 1995, I have only been involved in for the past year or so and had no idea what I had agreed to? I have never signed anything, or been provided with any information about financial responsibilities. I thought I would be making cakes to to help fundraise! I had a very different vision of what I was getting involved with. I haven’t been involved in financial decisions or the day to day running of the club. 
    help! Any advice gratefully received  

    Potentially, under some circumstances, yes I'm afraid. At least that would be the position in England, it might possibly be different under Scottish law.

    It is a point to bear in mind when joining any club or similar committee. Many do (and frankly all should) have insurance cover to protect the committee members etc, as far as is possible, from personal liability. A small tax liability is relatively minor however unwelcome. What would have been the position if somebody had been badly injured and the club was at fault?

    Was the club affiliated to any national body? If it was then that would probably have insurance cover to protect the office holders against civil liability. 

    I would suggest you take some legal advice. Does you house insurance provide any legal cover? Many policies do and often people don't realise.


  • MalMonroe
    MalMonroe Posts: 5,783 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Name Dropper Photogenic
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    Hi, because you say this " I have never signed anything, or been provided with any information about financial responsibilities. I thought I would be making cakes to to help fundraise! I had a very different vision of what I was getting involved with. I haven’t been involved in financial decisions or the day to day running of the club."

    And this "
    now I’ve been asked to pay hundreds towards a tax bill?"

    - it doesn't seem that anyone has given you any documentation or information of what they are talking about. Could it be a scam?

    I really don't see how anyone can make you pay anything towards anything at all. You were not part of any committee or any of the financial arrangements. You have simply been a temporary part-time volunteer. Are you the only person who has been told you will need to pay up?

    Please don't let anyone scare you into parting with any of your money.

    You could contact Citizens Advice (they have a section for Scotland) to see what they think but I don't think that there's any chance of these people bullying you into paying something that's none of your concern.

    Link here - 
    https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/

    The info in the following link may also be of interest - 

    https://kb.ros.gov.uk/other-registration-types/rci/about-unincorporated-bodies#additional

    But it does appear that you have to have signed a contract or some other official document in order to be held responsible for anything to do with the unincorporated commission. 

    I hope that's helpful. 
    Please note - taken from the Forum Rules and amended for my own personal use (with thanks) : It is up to you to investigate, check, double-check and check yet again before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my posts. Although I do carry out careful research before posting and never intend to mislead or supply out-of-date or incorrect information, please do not rely 100% on what you are reading. Verify everything in order to protect yourself as you are responsible for any action you consequently take.
  • mrsworriedmum
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    I’ll check this out thanks
    i am also getting legal advice- solicitor calling back tomorrow 
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