COVID-19: Consumer Affairs Victoria advice for incorporated associations

by Team BV

Consumer Affairs Victoria is providing advice for incorporated associations to help them manage their obligations during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. This advice covers:

  • holding regular meetings, including their Annual General Meeting (AGM); Special General Meetings (SGMs) or other meetings; and lodging annual statements with Consumer Affairs Victoria
  • having their financial statements reviewed or audited (if applicable).

 

AGMs, SGMs and lodging your annual statement

From midnight 25 March, incorporated associations conducting meetings must observe social distancing measures, to combat the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). If your incorporated association is scheduled to hold a meeting you should consider:

  • using alternative means to hold meetings, including teleconference or video conference – we recommend this for all incorporated associations, particularly for larger ones.
    Please note: the Associations Incorporation Act 2012 (the Act) permits members to take part in general meetings by using technology that allows members to clearly and simultaneously communicate with each other, regardless of the incorporated association’s rules regarding this
  • proxy voting – If using this method, you must use a standard form, subject to the rules of the incorporated Association. Members must be given a copy of that form with the notice of the AGM/Special General MeetinSGM. A person acting as a proxy must act honestly and in good faith and exercise due care and diligence
  • applying for an extension of time to hold your AGM. The Registrar will provide all associations an extension of three months and waive the fee.
    To seek an extension please complete our extension of time to hold an AGM or lodge financial statements form and submit to cav.registration@justice.vic.gov.au.

 

If you need to hold a physical meeting

If you do need to hold a physical meeting:

  • ensure the venue is large enough so attendees are able to maintain a distance of at least 1.5 metres from each other. Other social distancing requirements must be adhered to according the latest government guidelines
  • practice good personal hygiene including:
    • cleaning your hands thoroughly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser
    • covering your nose and mouth with a tissue or a flexed elbow when coughing or sneezing.

Committees can continue holding meetings where necessary by adhering to the social distancing requirements and consideration of the use of alternative technologies.

 

Having your financial statements reviewed or audited

If you are experiencing difficulties engaging an independent accountant or auditor to review your financial statements, you may also seek an extension.

To seek an extension, please complete our extension of time to hold an AGM or lodge financial statements form and submit to cav.registration@justice.vic.gov.au.

 

Article courtesy Consumer Affairs Victoria.