Regulator to probe into concerns at footballers' charity

The Charity Commission has opened an inquiry into the Professional Footballers' Association charity after concerns were raised about the relationship between the charity and its trade union.

The regulator opened a regulatory compliance case into the matter in November 2018, and has since launched an official statutory inquiry - the regulator's most serious intervention - to gain an insight into whether there is a conflict of interest in the charity's relationship with its trade union.

As part of the inquiry, the regulator will look at whether transactions with other bodies have been in the best interests of the charity, and whether the charities activities have been exclusively charitable and for the public benefit.

The administration, governance and management of the charity by the trustees will also be investigated to understand how conflicts of interest have been dealt with and whether there has been any unauthorised trustee benefit.

Furthermore, the regulator will probe into whether or not the trustees have complied with and fulfilled their duties and responsibilities under charity law.

The regulator said it may extend the scope of the inquiry if additional regulatory issues emerge.

Commenting on the case, Charity Commission head of investigations, monitoring and enforcement, Stephen Grenfell, said: “The public rightly expect charities to operate to the highest standards – across all they do. Serious concerns have been raised about the way the Professional Footballers’ Association charity is run.

"We will now examine what has happened at the charity through a full statutory inquiry and ensure, where necessary, action is taken.”

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