Friendly Societies Act 1974

Publication Date:January 01, 1974
 
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Friendly Societies Act 1974

1974 CHAPTER 46

An Act to consolidate the Friendly Societies Acts 1896 to 1971 and certain other enactments relating to the societies to which those Acts apply with amendments to give effect to recommendations of the Law Commission and the Scottish Law Commission.

[31st July 1974]

Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

The Registry of Friendly Societies

The Registry of Friendly Societies

S-1 The Registry Office

1 The Registry Office

(1) There shall continue to be a Chief Registrar of friendly societies (in this Act called ‘the Chief Registrar’) and one or more assistant registrars of friendly societies for the central registration area.

(2) The Chief Registrar and assistant registrars of friendly societies for the central registration area shall constitute the central office of the registry of friendly societies.

(3) There shall continue to be an assistant registrar of friendly societies for Scotland (in this Act called the ‘assistant registrar for Scotland’).

(4) The central office may, with the approval of the Minister for the Civil Service, have attached to it such assistants skilled in the business of an actuary and an accountant as may be required for discharging the duties imposed on the office by this Act.

S-2 Terms of office, qualifications and status of Chief and assistant registrars.

2 Terms of office, qualifications and status of Chief and assistant registrars.

(1) The Chief Registrar shall be a barrister of not less than twelve years' standing or a person who has held the office of assistant registrar for not less than five years.

(2) One at least of the assistant registrars of friendly societies for the central registration area shall be a barrister or solicitor of not less than seven years' standing.

(3) The assistant registrar for Scotland shall be an advocate writer to the signet or solicitor of not less than seven years' standing.

(4) The Chief and every assistant registrar shall be appointed by, and shall hold his office during the pleasure of, the Treasury.

(5) Except in so far as this Act otherwise provides, the assistant registrars shall be subordinate to the Chief Registrar.

S-3 Salaries and expenses.

3 Salaries and expenses.

3. There shall be paid out of moneys provided by Parliament—

a ) to the Chief and assistant registrars such salaries or other remunerations as the Minister for the Civil Service may allow; and
b ) any expenses which may be incurred for carrying out the purposes of this Act
S-4 Registration areas and functions of assistant registrars in those areas.

4 Registration areas and functions of assistant registrars in those areas.

(1) For the purposes of this Act there shall be two registration areas, that is to say,—

(a ) the area consisting of England and Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man; and

(b ) Scotland

(2) Any reference in this Act to the central registration area is a reference to the area specified in subsection (1)(a ) above.

(3) Within the registration areas for which they are respectively appointed, the assistant registrars shall exercise all functions and powers given by this Act to the registrar and may also, by the written authority of the Chief Registrar, exercise such of the functions and powers given by this Act to the Chief Registrar as he may delegate to them.

S-5 Particular functions of assistant registrar for Scotland.

5 Particular functions of assistant registrar for Scotland.

(1) Subject to any Treasury regulations, the assistant registrar for Scotland shall—

(a ) send to the central office copies of all such documents registered or recorded by him as the Chief Registrar may direct; and

(b ) record such documents and matters as may be sent to him for record from the central office and such other documents and matters as are in this Act required to be recorded; and

(c ) circulate and publish, or transmit to or from societies registered in Scotland from or to the central office such information and documents relating to the purposes of this Act as the Chief Registrar may, with the approval of the Treasury, direct; and

(d ) report his proceedings to the Chief Registrar as he may direct.

(2) The assistant registrar for Scotland shall not refuse to record any rules or amendments of rules which have been registered by the central office.

S-6 Report of the Chief Registrar and publication of information relating to friendly societies.

6 Report of the Chief Registrar and publication of information relating to friendly societies.

(1) The Chief Registrar shall every year make a report—

(a ) of his proceedings and of those of the assistant registrars;

(b ) of the principal matters transacted by him and them; and

(c ) of the valuations returned to the registrar during the year preceding;

and that report shall be laid before Parliament.

(2) The central office shall, with the approval of the Treasury, collect from the returns under this Act and from other sources and publish and circulate, either generally or in any particular district, or otherwise make known, such information on the subject of statistics of life and sickness and the application thereof to the business of friendly societies, such particulars of their returns and valuations and such other information useful to the members of, or to persons interested in, societies registered or capable of being registered under this Act, as the Chief Registrar may think fit.

Registration of societies and branches

Registration of societies and branches

S-7 Societies which may be registered.

7 Societies which may be registered.

(1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3) below and also to section 9 below, the following societies may be registered under this Act, that is to say,—

(a ) societies (in this Act called ‘friendly societies’) for the purpose of providing by voluntary subscriptions of the members, with or without the aid of donations for any of the purposes specified in Schedule 1 of this Act;

(b ) societies (in this Act called ‘cattle insurance societies’) for the purpose of insurance to any amount against loss of cattle, sheep, lambs, swine, horses, and other animals by death from disease or otherwise;

(c ) societies (in this Act called ‘benevolent societies’) for any benevolent or charitable purpose;

(d ) societies (in this Act called ‘working men's clubs’) for purposes of social intercourse, mutual helpfulness, mental and moral improvement and rational recreation;

(e ) societies (in this Act called ‘old people's home societies’) for the purpose of providing homes for the members and others at any age after fifty;

(f ) societies (in this Act called ‘specially authorised societies’) for any purpose which the Treasury may authorise as a purpose to which the provisions of this Act, or such of them as are specified in the authority, ought to be extended.

(2) A society may not be registered under this Act unless—

(a ) the rules of the society contain provisions in respect of the several matters mentioned in Part I of Schedule 2 to this Act and, in the case of a friendly society or cattle insurance society, also contain provisions in respect of the several matters mentioned in Part II of that Schedule; and

(b ) the place which under the society's rules is to be the society's registered office is situated in the central registration area or in Scotland; and

(c ) the society consists of at least seven persons.

(3) A friendly society or branch thereof may not be registered under this Act if it contracts with any person for the assurance of an annuity or of a gross sum in excess of the limits in section 64 below.

(4) Where any provisions of this Act are specified in an authority given under paragraph (f ) of subsection (1) above, those provisions only shall extend to a society which has been registered as a specially authorised society by virtue of that authority.

S-8 Registration of societies.

8 Registration of societies.

(1) An application to register a society under this Act shall be signed by seven members and the secretary of the society and shall be sent to the registrar.

(2) Together with an application under subsection (1) above there shall be sent copies of the rules of the society and a list of the names of the secretary and of every trustee or other officer intended to be authorised to sue and be sued on behalf of the society.

(3) A society shall not be registered under a name identical with that under which any other existing society is registered, or so nearly resembling that name as to be likely, or in any name...

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