Course Description

Certificate in Charity Law, Trusteeship and Governance

Law Society of Ireland – Diploma Centre

Programme objectives

On completion of this training programme, participants will have attained deep knowledge and insight into the following:

  • Establishing a charity: legal structures & registration requirements;
  • Governance codes & regulatory requirements;
  • Managing risk;
  • Managing finances;
  • Board responsibilities;
  • Fundraising codes & procurement;
  • Employment law, HR and volunteer policies;
  • Keeping on top of data protection issues.

Programme structure and approach to learning

The charity sector in Ireland is facing many challenges due to the impact of Covid-19, in particular the effect it has had on fundraising and service continuity.  Additionally, the establishment of the Charities Regulator, increasing regulatory & funding requirements (including the introduction in late 2018 of the Regulator’s Charities Governance Code), and developments on the horizon in terms of funding and competitive tendering herald changes that need to be taken on board to shape the future of this sector in Ireland.

This course, which represents a collaboration between the Law Society of Ireland and The Wheel, Ireland’s national charity association, provides practitioners and those working in charitable, social enterprise and community organisations with an overview of the law and best practice in the relevant areas. The course has a very practical emphasis and will equip participants with the necessary knowledge and skills to maintain integrity and uphold standards.

Our blended-learning approach and the use of an online forum ensure that attendees can learn both from lecturers and from the knowledge sharing and peer-to-peer aspect that is encouraged in interactive sessions.


The Certificate in Charity Law, Trusteeship and Governance programme is based on the following module scheme and covers key themes as listed below:

Module 1: Introduction

  • Recent trends in the charity sector in Ireland,
  • Regulation of charities and the Charities Act 2009,
  • The legal framework & legal structures for charities.

Module 2: Finance & Fundraising

  • Legislative framework for fundraising,
  • Regulation of & best practice for fundraising,
  • Financial reporting: Statutory requirements,
  • Charities Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP).

Module 3: Governance

  • Charities Regulator’s Charities Governance Code,
  • Implementation and related issues,
  • Risk assessments and managing risk.

Module 4: Strategy and management

  • Management, human resource and volunteer policies,
  • Charities & corporate governance,
  • Data protection issues,
  • Employment law,
  • Outcomes approach,
  • Procurement and tendering.

Our learning approach and the use of an online forum ensure that attendees can learn both from lecturers and from the knowledge sharing and peer-to-peer aspect that is encouraged in interactive sessions.


Workshops are interactive sessions that focus on group problem-solving and are designed to encourage candidates to engage in problem-solving scenario questions with a tutor who has specialised knowledge of the subject area.

Workshop Title Date Time
1 Charities Governance Code Saturday 27 February 2021 09:30 – 17:00
2 Planning a fundraising campaign Friday 19 March 2021 10:00 – 16:00
3 Financial reporting requirements of the Charities Act, introducing  Statement of Recommended Practice (SORP) Saturday 20 March 2021 10:00 – 16:00
4 Working for outcomes and panel discussion Saturday 17 April 2021 10:00 – 13:30


2,500-word written assignment (85%) and continuous assessment (15%). Final assessment date: 21 May 2021.


Members of the Wheel are eligible for a 10% discount off their fee.

Who should attend?

The course will appeal to those in practice who advise charitable organisations. It will also appeal to those working in the sector or those who hold positions on boards of organisations or in a management capacity. We invite lawyers and individuals involved with the sector to apply.

We welcome applications from others who are suitably qualified. Please explain your interest and set out any relevant experience in a cover letter and a brief CV. Such applications are subject to a supplemental fee of €100.


Lecturers and tutors will be drawn from solicitors, barristers, accountants, and others with expertise in the field of charity law, trusteeship and governance. Previous lecturers and current faculty include:

  • Marguerite Bolger SC,
  • Katie Cadden, Solicitor, Board Member and Regulatory Committee Chairperson of Charities Regulatory Authority,
  • Tony Ward, The Wheel,
  • Stuart Garland, Volunteer Ireland,
  • Daragh O’Brien, Castlebridge,
  • Ivan Cooper, The Wheel,
  • Cormac Ó Ceallaigh, Cormac Ó Ceallaigh Solicitors,
  • Mary O’Kennedy, O’Kennedy Consulting,
  • Philip Isard, Quality Matters,
  • Andrea Shupinski, FCA.
  • Senan Turnbull, Community, voluntary and charities sector specialist,
  • Rachel Cadden , BL,
  • Deirdre Garvey, The Wheel,
  • Mairead O’Connor, The Wheel,
  • Nick Sparrow, Not for profit consultant,
  • Diarmaid O’Corrbui, Carmichael,


We have designed our courses to enable you to satisfy as much of your CPD requirement as possible. Time spent attending lectures and workshops in person or completing these via e-learning as part of your course can be claimed towards your annual CPD requirement. The number of hours of CPD that you may claim in relation to your diploma/certificate course will depend on the way in which you access each of the individual sessions. For further information, visit the CPD scheme and download the CPD booklet.

College Name Law Society of Ireland – Diploma Centre
Course Category Law
Course Type Online Learning
Course Qualification Award / Certificate
Course Location Dublin, Ireland
Location Postcode Dublin 7
Course Start Date 26th February 2021
Course End Date 21st May 2021
Course Fee 1650
Course Times Lectures and workshops on Fridays and Saturdays.
Awarding Body Law Society of Ireland
Title of Awarding Certificate in Charity Law, Trusteeship and Governance
For information about Law Society of Ireland – Diploma Centre, please visit our college page on by clicking here.

Course Provider

Law Society of Ireland – Diploma Centre

The Education Centre, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7 (DX 79 Dublin), Ireland D07 VW24, Dublin, Ireland

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Law Society of Ireland – Diploma Centre
The Education Centre, Blackhall Place, Dublin 7 (DX 79 Dublin), Ireland D07 VW24, Dublin, Ireland

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