Community Amateur Sports Clubs
Is your rugby club looking to save money? Are you looking for ways to help fund new facilities or invest in the current clubhouse, pitches and equipment? Would paying significantly reduced business rates or claiming 25p for every pound of Gift Aid donations given to your rugby club help your club’s finances? Is your rugby club looking to relocate through sale of current facilities and facing potential large capital gains tax bill? Would exemption of the capital gains tax allow the club reinvest more into the club and future development?
The government’s Community Amateur Sports Club scheme (CASC) allows you to do just this.
Registering as a Community Amateur Sports Club can provide a range of benefits for community rugby clubs. More than 6,202 such clubs are registered, claiming an estimated total cash benefit of at least £117.1m (source: Tim Baldwin – Monthly analysis of CASC registrations). Over 425 of these clubs are rugby clubs.
The RFU recommends that clubs review the benefits of CASC registration and review this alongside the RFU’s recommendation to incorporate. However, while many clubs will and do benefit from CASC registration, it is not right for every club and the decision to register should not be taken lightly.
Unincorporated clubs that are CASC's should not incorporate until HMRC's revised CASC guidance is available. A number of clubs have been de-registered on incorporation but the new company to which the club's activities have been transferred has not been registered because of an imminent change in HMRC's guidance on eligibility for CASC status.
Guidance on Incorporation of unincorporated CASCs (MS Word Doc 54kB).
Please note: there have been recent guideline changes, and these are outlined in the following documents available in Word and PDF format:
RFU CASC incorporation note April 2012 - Word – (MS Word Doc 65kB)
RFU CASC incorporation note April 2012 - PDF – (PDF 289kB)
Amendment to HMRC interpretation November 2012 – (MS Word Doc 78kB)
Amendment to HMRC interpretation November 2012 – (PDF 245kB)
Update on the CASC Scheme March 2013 – (PDF 262kB)
CASC Registration Benefits and CASC Case Studies
Both property and non-property owning clubs can significantly benefit from the scheme. The key benefits of CASC registration include:
- 80% mandatory business rate relief. Local authorities can offer up to 100% relief to clubs at their discretion
- The ability to raise funds from individual donations under Gift Aid. A registered CASC can reclaim up to £25 in tax for every £100 donated
- Tax free income from interest and capital gains (used for qualifying purposes)
- CASCs are exempt from Corporation Tax on profits derived from trading activities if their trading income is under £30,000 pa.
- Profits derived from property income are also exempt for CASCs if gross property income is under £20,000 pa, of particular relevance following the abolition of the nil rate band
- CASCs whose income does not exceed these thresholds will no longer be required to complete an annual Corporation Tax return
Browse the CASC case studies section for practical examples of how community rugby clubs just like yours have benefited from CASC registration.
JustGiving for Sports Clubs who are CASC registered
In a new partnership between Sport England, SRA and Just Giving, the JustGiving for Sports Clubs scheme enables CASCs to raise money through the JustGiving website without having to pay the monthly subscription fee (worth £180 per year). This is aimed at helping clubs raise money online and making it easier for them to take advantage of Gift Aid on donations.
More information about the scheme and details on how to register can be found at the JustGiving website. It is estimated that only ten per cent of CASC clubs currently take advantage of Gift Aid.
Farnham RUFC is a club that has been using JustGiving over the last five months to raise over £23,000, including £4,000 of Gift Aid. The following link provides a case study of Farnham's use of JustGiving and Gift Aid (PDF 184kB).
Also of interest may be: JustGiving Presentation (MS Powerpoint 4.5MB) and JustGiving – How it works document (MS Word DOC 41kB).
What should your rugby club do to be eligible?
- Be community focused and open to all without discrimination
- Have a core purpose in the promotion of amateur rugby union or amateur sport recognised by Sport England if part of a multi sport club
- Reinvest any income back into the club
- Be managed by fit and proper persons
How to become a CASC?
Becoming a CASC could not be more straightforward for most rugby clubs. Just follow these three simple steps:
- Read and discuss the guidance notes from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and decide if CASC registration is the right choice for your club
- Look at your club’s constitution. Is this accurate reflection of the club’s policies and does it fulfil the criteria set out in the guidance notes? If not you may need to make changes.
- If you are happy that CASC registration is right for your club and that your constitution is appropriate, complete and submit the HMRC application form
Club Constitution Sample Rules
The RFU has produced two sets of sample rules which have been approved by HMRC:
To find out more take a look at the Community Amateur Sports Clubs website, a dedicated site run by the scheme’s main stakeholders where you can:
- Download all the key forms
- Learn how to maximise Gift Aid
- Access CASC Q&As
- Talk to other clubs through an online forum
- Keep track of news about the scheme
Relief on business rates alone are estimated by the Chancellor of the Exchequer to be worth £2000 per year per club. While this only benefits facility owning clubs, non-facility owning clubs can still significantly benefit from Gift Aid and exemption from Corporation Tax.
Other guidance in this area includes: