In India non-profit / public charitable organisations can be registered as trusts, societies, or a private limited non-profit company, under section-8 of the Companies Act,2013.
Whether a trust, society or section-8 company, the Income Tax Act gives all categories equal treatment, in terms of exempting their income and granting 80G certificates, whereby donors to non-profit organisations may claim a rebate against donations made. Foreign contributions to non-profits are governed by FC(R)A regulations and the Home Ministry.
Formation and Registration of a Non -Profit organisations in India
1) Trust 2) Society 3) Section-8 Company
A public charitable trust is usually floated when there is property involved, especially in terms of land and building.
Legislation: Different states in India have different Trusts Acts in force, which govern the trusts in the state; in the absence of a Trusts Act in any particular state or territory the general principles of the Indian Trusts Act 1882 are applied.
Main Instrument: The main instrument of any public charitable trust is the trust deed, wherein the aims and objects and mode of management (of the trust) should be enshrined. In every trust deed, the minimum and maximum number of trustees has to be specified. The trust deed should clearly spell out the aims and objects of the trust, how the trust should be managed, how other trustees may be appointed or removed, etc. The trust deed should be signed by both the settlor/s and trustee/s in the presence of two witnesses. The trust deed should be executed on non-judicial stamp paper, the value of which would depend on the valuation of the trust property.
Trustees: A trust needs a minimum of two trustees; there is no upper limit to the number of trustees. The Board of Management comprises the trustees.
Application for Registration: The application for registration should be made to the official having jurisdiction over the region in which the trust is sought to be registered.
After providing details (in the form) regarding designation by which the public trust shall be known, names of trustees, mode of succession, etc., the applicant has to affix a court fee stamp of Rs.2/- to the form and pay a very nominal registration fee which may range from Rs.3/- to Rs.25/-, depending on the value of the trust property.
The application form should be signed by the applicant before the regional officer or superintendent of the regional office of the charity commissioner or a notary. The application form should be submitted, together with a copy of the trust deed.
Two other documents which should be submitted at the time of making an application for registration are affidavit and consent letter.