A society refers to pool of individuals that have a common goal and aims to serve a charitable purpose. Societies are typically registered for incentivizing charitable undertakings like music, sports, art, religions, education, etc. The Society Registration Act is the governing body of registered societies in India. Such societies are liable to operate in line with provisions of the said Act.
This Act seeks to underpin legal stipulations of society registration to incentivize fine arts, science, literature, or distribution of awareness for bountiful purposes.
Purpose of Society Registration in India:
A society registration can be done for the promotion and development of science, fine arts, or literature, or the distribution of insightful knowledge or charitable purposes of political education. As per section 20 of the Society Act, 1860, registration of a society is granted to serve either one or all of the following purposes;
- Incentivization of fine arts.
- Distribution of political education.
- Facilitating charitable assistance.
- Incentivization of literature & science
- Setting up military orphan funds.
- Maintenance or establishment of galleries or public museums.
- Maintenance or establishment of public libraries
- Incentivization or distribution of insightful knowledge
- Accumulations of natural history
- Accumulations of philosophical & mechanical inventions, instruments or design.
Registration Process of a society in India:
- A society can be set up by at least seven or more Indian nationals. Apart from that, entities, overseas nationals, and other registered societies possess rights to register Society’s MOA.
- Just like Partnership Company, society has the liberty of functioning as an unregistered entity. However, only the registered societies will hold the properties in their name or have the right to sue the defaulter in its
- State governments administer society registration in India. Therefore, the application for the same should be filed before the specific authority of the state, which the society has its registered office.
- Society registration usually begins with the name approval process followed by the drafting of the MOA and the Rules & Regulations of the society.
Name Selection for the Society:
In view of the Society Act, 1860, the applicant must keep the following facts in mind before selecting the society’s name;
- The proposed name should not possess any resemblance with existing names since it is an offence. The proposed name should not violate the provisions of the Emblem & Names Act, 1950.
- The name should be original and free from an element that hampers third-party interest in any way.
Memorandum of Association (MOA) of the society must enclose the signature of every establishing member. Apart from that, it must entail the stamping of the following officials.
- Gazetted Officer
- Notary Public,
- Oath Commissioner,
Fundamental contents of Memorandum of Association:
The MOA Shall Entail the Following Things;
- Society name;
- Address of the Society;
- Duties of governors;
- Directors, council, committees, or other regulatory bodies that seek to govern such a society
Apart from MOA, the society is also liable to draft a brief copy of rules and regulations that must enclose the signature of at least three members of the governing body. Further, it must be filed with MOA.
Basic Documents required to authenticate MOA of a society:
- Requesting letter reflecting the formal request for society registration. It must enclose the signature of all establishing members.
- Duplicate copy of MOA accompanied by a certified copy.
- Duplicate copy of Rules & Regulations of society along with attested copy, enclosing the signature of the establishing members.
- Address proof of society’s registered office & NOC from the landowner
- An affidavit attested by the secretary or president of the society.
- Affidavit avowed by secretary or president of society declaring relationship among subscribers.
- Minutes of meeting record
Mandatory Documentations for registering a society in India:
Following Are the Mandatory Documentation for Registering Society in India;
- PAN Card: Pan card of all establishing members of the society
- Residence Proof: The residence proof pertaining to society’s members. The following documents can serve as legitimate proof of residence.
- Bank Statement
- Utility Bill
- Aadhaar Card
Memorandum of association attested by the aforesaid individuals
Rules & Regulations of the Society drafted in a way mentioned above. It must highlight the following details;
- Rules and regulations pertaining to society’s undertakings and day to day operation
- Rules regarding the membership enrolment
- Timeline and predefined schedule for conducting a meeting
- Auditors’ details
- Arbitration conditions for dispute handling
- Rules pertaining to society’s dissolution
Point to Be Noted: Inclusion of Any New Rules in The Above Document Seeks the Approval of the President, Chairman, Vice President and The Secretary of the Society.
- Covering letter: A covering letter reflecting the object of the proposed society. It must enclose the signature of all the founding members.
- Proof of Address of society: A copy of address proof of the proposed society along with the NOC granted by the landowner.
- List of all the members: A complete list of the founding members along with their signatures.
- Declaration: A declaration made by the president confirming that he/she is willing & competent to serve the assigned duties.
The above documents must find their way to the Registrar of Societies accompanied by standard fees in two copies.
Upon receiving the application form, the Registrar of Societies will sign the first copy as acknowledgement & keep the second for authentication. After scrutinizing the documents, the registrar shall grant the certificate of incorporation by allotting a registration number to it.
The attest Rules & Regulations & MOA must be filed with the respective society or registrar of state with a standard fee. If the registrar finds no loophole in the application during the inspection, then they will grant them legal status to society.