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Introduction to charity subtypes

The ACNC will register an organisation as a charity once it decides that the purposes are charitable, and that the organisation is otherwise eligible.
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© ACNC

The ACNC will register an organisation as a charity once it decides that the purposes are charitable, and that the organisation is otherwise eligible.

When the ACNC registers a charity, it usually registers it with one or more ‘subtypes’. The subtypes reflect the charity’s purposes.

The 14 charity subtypes

The ACNC Act sets out 14 charity subtypes. These include the 12 charitable purposes as set out in the Charities Act 2013 (Cth), as well as two others – Public Benevolent Institution and Health Promotion Charity.

The 14 charity subtypes are:

  • Advancing health
  • Advancing education
  • Advancing social or public welfare
  • Advancing religion
  • Advancing culture
  • Promoting reconciliation, mutual respect and tolerance between groups of individuals that are in Australia
  • Promoting or protecting human rights
  • Advancing the security or safety of Australia or the Australian public
  • Preventing or relieving the suffering of animals
  • Advancing the natural environment
  • Any other purpose beneficial to the general public and analogous to the other charitable purposes
  • Advancing public debate
  • Health Promotion Charity
  • Public Benevolent Institution

A charity’s activities must be specifically directed towards achieving the charitable purpose as described by its subtypes.

The next step looks at how an organisation can choose a subtype.

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