As a church you will need to have your accounts checked by someone competent outside the PCC to ensure that you have complied with the Charities Act. This is your independent examination.
The person who checks your accounts in this way is the Independent Examiner and is appointed by the Annual Parochial Church meeting (APCM). However the appointment is usually made on the advice of the PCC.
To give good advice the PCC needs to understand what the Independent Examiner is expected to do, what information they need to do it and what they will report on. It is important for the PCC to give enough time to finding the right person for the job.
Appointing and Working with an Independent Examiner
Chapter 11 of the PCC Accountability guide provides guidance for PCCs on appointing and working with an Independent Examiner. (Please note: this is a pre-publication version that may contain some minor typographical errors. The book and a final online version will be available from February)
Further detail may be found in two documents produced by the Charity Commission:
CC31 is a Trustees’ Guide to Independent Examination. If your Gross Income exceeds £250,000 (but you are under the audit threshold), your examiner will need to be appropriately qualified, as shown by membership of one of the bodies listed in section D1 of this guide.
CC32 is a guide for Independent Examiners. This guide includes a template for the Independent Examiners report.