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FCRA License

FCRA License

The Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA), 2010 provides rules and regulations for receiving foreign contributions. According to the Act, any person who has a definite cultural, educational, religious or social program and wants to receive foreign contribution in the form of foreign or Indian currency, donation, and delivery of an article should be registered under the FCRA and shall acquire an FCRA license. Generally, FCRA licenses are granted to NGOs, societies or charitable trusts that receive foreign funds as a donation.

FCRA Certificate

As per Sec 11 of FCRA, it is mandatory for any person accepting foreign contribution to receive a certificate of registration by the Central Government. This certificate is valid for 5 years from the date on which it is issued. An application for renewal of the certificate shall be made 6 months six months prior to the date of expiry of the certificate. If the certificate is not renewed within the stipulated time, afresh application for registration has to be made.

However, if a person provides sufficient grounds, in writing, explaining the reasons for not submitting the certificate of registration for renewal within the stipulated time, his application may be accepted. A late fee of Rs. 5000/- is to be paid along with the requisite fee of Rs. 1500/-. This provision is only applicable for 1 year from the date of the expiry of the original certificate and not later.

Cancellation of Certificate

Sec 14 of the FCRA lays down provisions for cancellation of the FCRA certificate by the Central Government. A person whose certificate has been canceled under this section is not eligible to register for a certificate or receive a grant of prior permission for a period of three years from the date of the cancellation of the certificate. The FCRA certificate can be canceled in the following cases:

  • If any statement made by the holder of the certificate in relation to the grant of registration or renewal of the certificate is false or incorrect, the Central Government may cancel the FCRA certificate.

  • If any terms and conditions of the FCRA certificate have been violated by the holder of the certificate.

  • If the Central Government is of the opinion that it is necessary to cancel the FCRA certificate in the interest of the public.

  • If any provision of the FCRA or rules or order has been violated by the holder of the certificate.

  • If the holder of the certificate has not been engaged in any reasonable activity in his chosen field for the past 2 years or has become defunct.

Registration of FCRA certificate

1.    Application

  • The first step is to register on the official website of FCRA.

  • Application for grant of registration / prior permission is to be submitted online in form FC-3 (A) and FC-3 (B) at the website fcraonline.nic.in

  • It is required to upload the signed or digitally signed application accompanied by scanned documents necessary for registration.

  • A person seeking registration shall be required to open an exclusive bank account to receive the foreign contribution.

One or more bank accounts can be opened for the purpose of utilizing foreign contributions. This shall be intimated to the Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, New Delhi by filing the online electronic form FC-6D within fifteen days of the opening of any account.

2.    Application Fee

The application fee for the grant of registration is Rs. 5000/- and Rs. 3000/- for grant of prior permission. The application is to pay through the online payment gateway. 

3.    Required Documents

  • Signature of the chief functionary of the organization or association.

  • A self-certified copy of the registration certificate or the trust deed of the organization on any such related document.

  • A self-certified copy of the Memorandum or Articles of the Association specifying its aims and objects.

  • Last three years activity report of the association.

  • Copies of relevant audited statement of accounts for the past three years

Conclusion

It is mandatory for persons receiving foreign contributions to register themselves under FCRA and to obtain a registration certificate. The certificate is valid for a period of 5 days from the date on which it is issued. It should be renewed six months prior to the date of the expiry of its validity.

Author:

eStartIndia Team



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