About Club Structure

It is important that your club is structured, from a legal perspective, in a way that best suits your needs now and in the future. A club structure can influence how a club is viewed by others (e.g. banks, funding providers, the public) and determines whether the club is treated as a separate legal entity (i.e. club members are not personally responsible for its debts). It is also important to consider that there are different rules and legal requirements depending on how a club is structured. Whatever structure or status a club chooses it is important for them to understand what the implications are, and it is advisable to consider updating the club’s constitution to reflect the structure of the club.

There are two main types of organisational status, unincorporated and corporated. Unincorporated includes company limited by guarantee, company limited by shares, community benefit society and charitable incorporated organisation. 


Unincorporated are generally suitable if: ​

> Small local club​

> Don’t own assets (property etc.) ​

> Don’t take on any contracts​

> Not involved in high risk sport​

> Protected fully through 3rd party insurance


Corporated are ​generally suitable if:

> Employ staff​

> Apply for finance (loans or grants) ​

> Own assets​

> Entering contracts​

> Taking on a lease​

> Buying buildings


Choose the appropriate structure for your club​

> Do it once, do it right​

> Register with HMRC if liable to Corporation Tax​

> Get the right Directors​

> Ensure your details are correct and up to date​

> Use the correct details on correspondence / contracts etc.​

> Know your ongoing obligations e.g. annual accounts, annual return.​


National Resources

Unincorporated Organisations

This page explains what an unincorporated organisation is, the type of club this structure is best suited to, and the advantages and disadvantages of this type of structure.


Incorporated organisations

This page contains a video with a step by step guide to incorporation, as well as a breakdown of the different types of incorporation.


Charitable Status

This page offers guidance of how to become a charity and describes the advantages and disadvantages of charitable status to determine whether this would be right for your club.


Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC)

This page details the benefits of becoming a Community Amateur Sport Club (CASC) and highlights the qualifying conditions needed. There is also a link to further CASC support and guidance.