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Charitable organisations Ngā rōpū kaupapa atawhai

Charitable organisations

Charitable organisations are organisations (whether incorporated or not) that carry out charitable activities or exist exclusively for charitable purposes. A charitable organisation needs to be registered by Charities Services to receive tax exemptions.
Income tax and charitable organisations

Charitable organisations are liable for income tax if they operate with no written rules, constitution or trust deed or they operate under a set of rules, a constitution or a trust deed that does not meet the requirements for income tax exemption or they use business income for charitable purposes outside New Zealand. Learn about rates of income tax, when to file returns and possible exemptions.

Registration of charities

Charities Services maintains a register of charitable entities. Registration is voluntary, but if a charity wishes to be exempt from income tax it will need to register.

Deregistration of charities

Charitable organisations are entitled to charities-related tax concessions when they are registered with Charities Services. Those concessions stop when they are removed from the Charities Register (deregistered). These rules clarify the tax liability for the charity and their donors when they are deregistered.

Charitable organisations and community housing

Community housing entities may be entitled to a tax exemption on their income and be granted donee status. This only applies to community housing entities that have been set up to provide housing or housing assistance for low income householders who may not otherwise be able to buy their own home.

Charitable organisations and the Student Loan Scheme

If you're an approved charitable organisation, and a student loan borrower is or will be working overseas for you as a volunteer (or for a token payment), they can apply to us for an exemption to keep their entitlement to an interest-free student loan.

Guidelines for non-resident charities

These guidelines outline Inland Revenue's requirements for non-resident charities to apply for and obtain exemption from income tax. We may approve exemption from income tax for a non-resident charity if they are unable to be registered with Charities Services under the Charities Act 2005.

Charitable bodies requesting overseas donee status

You will need to read these guidelines if your organisation is requesting overseas donee status.