Two or more charity trustees can be authorised to sign documents on behalf of the charity trustees of a charity by a resolution passed under s.333 of the Charities Act 2011 (2011 Act). This is referred to as a Section 333 Resolution.
The charity trustees in terms of Methodist charities are almost always the Managing Trustees meaning the resolution that needs to be in place must be passed by the appropriate managing trustee body (the charity) whether that is the local Church Council, the Circuit Meeting, District Synod or Methodist Council for example.
If the managing trustee body/ charity authorises more than two Managing Trustees to sign property documentation generally, then any two of these people can sign on behalf of all the members of the managing trustee body.
If the managing trustee body is a registered charity, please ensure that the authorised Managing Trustees are registered and listed as charity trustees with the Charity Commission. You can check whether Managing Trustees are registered as charity trustees by looking on the Charity Commission website. Please refer to the Charity Commission home page from where you can search for a charity using the registered charity name or number.
In property transactions, such as sales, purchases, leases and easements, documents will need to be signed by at least two Managing Trustees authorised under a Section 333 Resolution. The resolution can relate to specific documents on a particular transaction or to documents in general. Managing Trustees can assist the smooth running of a transaction (and avoid having to pass a last minute Section 333 Resolution) by ensuring that an appropriate resolution is in place from the outset. If, a general Section 333 Resolution is not in place already, Managing Trustees should ensure that a Section 333 Resolution is passed as soon as possible. Authorising more than two Managing Trustees to sign documents can be useful to ensure availability.
Below is a suggested form of resolution for Managing Trustees to utilise:
Section 333 Resolution:
RESOLUTION by the charity trustees of the [Church Council] OR [Circuit Meeting] OR [OTHER APPROPRIATE MANAGING TRUSTEE BODY] of [NAME OF MANAGING TRUSTEE BODY OR REGISTERED CHARITY NAME IF REGISTERED WITH THE CHARITY COMMISSION] [(registered charity number [NUMBER])] (the Charity).
Pursuant to the power conferred by section 333 of the Charities Act 2011 we, the Managing Trustees and charity trustees of the Charity resolve that:
EITHER (general authority)
[1st NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE] and [2nd NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE] be authorised to approve, sign and execute any document to which the charity trustees of the Charity from time to time are a party with the intention that any document executed under this authority will have the same effect as if executed by all of the charity trustees of the Charity.
OR (authority specific to the transaction)
[1st NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE] and [2nd NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE] be authorised to approve, sign and execute any document needed to give effect to the [DESCRIBE THE TRANSACTION e.g. sale of Old Manse, Large Town] with the intention that any document executed under this authority will have the same effect as if executed by all of the charity trustees of the Charity.
OR IF documents are to be signed by any two of a number of authorised Managing Trustees:
Any two of the following charity trustees of the Charity be authorised to approve, sign and execute any document to which the charity trustees of the Charity from time to time are a party with the intention that any document executed under this authority will have the same effect as if executed by all of the charity trustees of the Charity:
- [1st NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE]
- [2nd NOMINATED MANAGING TRUSTEE]
- [INSERT NAMES OF ANY ADDITIONAL AUTHORISED MANAGING TRUSTEES]
Please note that this document is to provide guidance and assistance to Managing Trustees and their professional advisers. This guidance note is general in nature, may not reflect all recent legal developments and may not apply to the specific facts and circumstances of any particular matter.
Also note that nothing within the documents and guidance notes provided by TMCP nor any receipt or use of such information, should be construed or relied on as advertising or soliciting to provide any legal services. Nor does it create any solicitor-client relationship or provide any legal representation, advice or opinion whatsoever on behalf of TMCP or its employees.
Accordingly, neither TMCP nor its employees accept any responsibility for use of this document or action taken as a result of information provided in it.
Please remember that Managing Trustees need to take advice that is specific to the situation at hand. This document is not legal advice and is no substitute for such advice from Managing Trustees' own legal advisers.