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02 Feb 2000

The public benefit test

This paper discusses the common law requirement that to be charitable an entity, such as a trust, must be for the benefit of the community or an appreciable section of it.

Related information

See section s OB 3B of the Income Tax Act 1994

This earlier legislation forms part of the definition of "charitable purpose" in s YA 1 of the Income Tax Act 2007

About issues papers

Inland Revenue’s Tax Counsel Office (Public Advice and Guidance) develops and publishes public statements interpreting the tax laws.

Where significant uncertainty exists, it helps us to hear from interested parties before we prepare a public statement. This generates discussion so we gain a better understanding of the issues, including practical concerns. An issues paper sets out our initial views on how the relevant tax laws may apply. If it results in the issue of a draft public statement, public consultation will occur in the usual manner.

Given that issues papers produced by the Tax Counsel Office represent our initial views only, taxation officers, taxpayers and practitioners must not rely on them. Only finalised public statements represent authoritative statements by Inland Revenue of its stance on the issues covered. 

Any views presented in an issues paper do not change the Commissioner’s current position or practices

Find out more about issues papers