Pay a trustee to do work for the charity

Trustees could be paid for:

  • building work such as plumbing or painting
  • providing specialist services, such as estate agency or computer consultancy
  • providing premises or facilities for occasional use, for example as a meeting room
  • administration or secretarial work

Legal requirement: before paying a trustee, you must have regard to the commission’s guidance on paying trustees for services. It explains how you must:

  • produce a written agreement between the charity and the trustee (or connected person) being paid
  • specify the exact or maximum amount to be paid
  • make sure the trustee does not take part in decisions made by the trustee board regarding any aspect of the agreement
  • agree the payment is in your charity’s best interests and reasonable for the service provided
  • not allow payments or other benefits to half or more than half of your board – the number of trustees receiving any payment or benefit must be in the minority
  • make sure your charity’s governing document doesn’t prevent you from paying trustees for services

When deciding to pay a trustee for services or goods, you must follow your duty of care as trustees. In practice, this means you should:

  • be clear that the payment can be justified in the charity’s best interests
  • identify and record conflicts of interest and prevent them from affecting the decision
  • use reasonable care and skill when making your decision (take legal advice if you need it)
  • decide what you will do if the services or goods aren’t satisfactory
  • keep records of discussions at meetings and disclose the payment in your accounts