Skip to main content

Expenses Policy

Expense Policy


A. Overview and Scope

B. Waiving Expenses

C. Trustee Expenses Reclaimable

D. Completion, submission and reimbursement of Expense Claims

E. Authorisation and Payment of Expense Claims

F. Disallowable Expenses

Appendix 1: Expense Claim Form

Appendix 2: Mileage Claim Form

A. Overview and Scope

All Trustees and volunteers are entitled to reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses which they legitimately incur while promoting and supporting the delivery of the charity’s objectives.

These policies and procedures are based on the Charity Commissioners guidance on reimbursing out-of-pocket expenses incurred by Trustees as in its publication “Trustee Expenses and Payments” (CC11) sections of this policy have been taken verbatim from that publication.

The Charity reserves the right to change its Expenses Policies & Procedures to maintain consistency with current accepted Best Practice, and otherwise to meet the needs of the Charity.

B. Waiving Expenses

Supporters who generously waive their expense or purchases as “donations” to the Charity inadvertently create some difficulties. If reimbursement of expenses/purchases is not claimed they cannot be entered into the Charity’s accounts to show both the true costs of running the Charity and the generosity of its supporters, this can hamper funding applications.

B. Waiving Expenses (continued)

Furthermore, even if the amount of the waived expenses/purchases is notified to the Charity and entered into the accounts, the Charity is not able to claim any Gift Aid that might otherwise have been available on the donation because Gifts-in-Kind are specifically excluded from Gift Aid under HMRC rules.

Under HMRC rules the Charity must first make a repayment of the expenses claim in a way that is verifiable by HMRC (usually BACS transfer) and then the claimant must separately make a similar, reciprocal, verifiable donation to the charity.

Accordingly the Charity encourages all those who can legitimately claim reimbursement of their expenses to do so and then back-donate it to the charity, thereby making it eligible for Gift Aid.

C. Trustee expenses reclaimable

Underlying this guidance is the need for Trustees to be conscious of the proper use of charity funds and of maximising value for money in the way they travel and the accommodation used.

In all cases, it is important to ensure that the reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses is not- or does not appear to be – a disguise for making income payments (remuneration) to the recipient(s).

Expenses may only be incurred and subsequently reimbursed by the Charity in respect of activities which are part of the Charity’s agreed and budgeted programme of charitable activities (ie prior agreement with the CEO/CFO).

Rates are not included in this guidance but are included on the Expense Claim Form in Appendix 1.

Trustees may be refunded for the following expenditure incurred in the course of carrying out Charity business;

  1. Printer, Postage and Stationery Costs
  2. Travel and Parking costs
  3. Uniform costs
  4. Childcare when attending Charity business
  5. Other out-of-pocket expenses

Fundamentally you should not be out of pocket as a result of having to undertake Charity Trustee duties, however you should also not make a profit.

C. Trustee expenses reclaimable (continued)

1. Printing, Postage and Stationery Costs

Any costs relating to printing charity promotional material, letters, meeting notes and other literature may be reimbursed. If a printer/ink is used for personal and charity printing please ensure you pro rata the usage and therefore the expense (receipt) between the two. Postage costs incurred on behalf of the charity can be reimbursed on presentation of receipts. Stationery costs incurred may be reimbursed on presentation of receipts.

2. Travel and Parking Costs

All journeys over 50 miles should be made on public transport where possible, if this is not possible prior approval to drive the journey and claim the mileage must be gained from the CFO/CEO.

Train tickets should be booked in advance where possible to benefit from cheaper rates. All Train travel should be 2nd class and off peak if available.

Parking costs incurred when on charity business away from the normal place of work will be reimbursed.

Taxis (preferably pre-booked mini-cabs rather than on demand hire) may be used in exceptional circumstances where no other options are available.

Mileage should be claimed from home to the event (assuming no EEA office and no normal place of work). Mileage rates payable for travel by car are included in the Mileage claim form in Appendix 2 and will be updated in line with HMRC recommended allowances.

You may only use your private car in connection with Charity business if, at the time of each journey, it has a valid:

A) Certificate of Insurance

B) Road Tax if applicable

C) MOT certificate if applicable

Please keep the VAT receipt for fuel purchased within one month prior to your business journey and submit with your mileage claim.

3. Uniform Costs

For promotional purposes at events Trustees/volunteers may be required to wear Charity uniform. If these are purchased on behalf of the charity these can be reimbursed. Prior approval should be gained from the CEO/CFO.

C. Trustee expenses reclaimable (continued)

4. Childcare when attending Charity business

Childcare costs may be claimed whereby you are required to attend an event/meeting on behalf of the Charity but would not be able to attend if your child/children were not looked after.  If claiming childcare costs the child/children should be left with a qualified professional childcare provider and an invoice/receipt must be attached to your claim.

5. Other out of pocket expenses

Expense claim forms may also include claims for the reimbursement of goods/services purchased by the claimant on behalf of the Charity.

Telephone Calls: The Charity will reimburse volunteers/Trustees for the actual cost of calls made from their personal telephones made whilst carrying out work for the charity, this includes calls from home telephones. No reimbursement will be made for the notional cost of calls which incurred no actual cost to the claimant because they were covered by a contract which included an allocation of ‘free’ calls.

D. Completion, submission and reimbursement of Expense Claims

Trustees must reclaim their expenses on the expense form provided in Appendix 1 within one month of incurring the expense. Trustees should request VAT receipts when incurring the expenditure and these VAT receipts must be attached to the expense claim form.

Please note if a receipt detailing the VAT number and breakdown of VAT is not obtained then the Charity will lose out on being able to reclaim that VAT.

Late submission of expense claims or missing receipts may result in a delay in reimbursement or the Charity may reserve the right not to reimburse the expenses.

All claims submitted for the reimbursement of expenses incurred on Charity activities and/or purchases made on behalf of the Charity will be vetted for compliance with Charity law, Taxation law and this policy before being authorised for reimbursement.

The expense claim form must be authorised by either the CEO/CFO. An individual must not authorise their own expenses.

Reimbursement of authorised expenses will be made by BACS payment to your bank as soon as is reasonably practical after receipt.

E. Disallowable Expenses

The following items are not reimbursable under this policy:

-Parking fine tickets

-Speeding tickets

-Finance charges for personal credit card

-Excess baggage charges

-Expenses for travel incurred by companion/family members

-Expenses related to holiday or non-charity related activities whilst on a charity trip

-Repairs due to accidents in personal vehicles

-Payments to family/friends for childcare

-Non-compulsory insurance cover

This list is not exhaustive. If you wish to reclaim anything not covered in this policy please obtain prior approval from the CEO and the CFO.

Appendix 1 and 2 available on request