Society registration is the process of legally incorporating a society under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 in India. A society is a type of non-profit organization that is formed for charitable, educational, cultural, religious, social, or any other useful purpose. Societies are governed by a managing committee or governing body, and they operate for the benefit of their members or the public at large.
Here are the key steps involved in society registration in India:
Determine Objectives and Name: Define the objectives and purpose of the society, ensuring that they align with the provisions of the Societies Registration Act. Choose a unique name for the society.
Formation of a Governing Body: Assemble a governing body or managing committee for the society. The governing body usually consists of a president, vice-president, secretary, treasurer, and other members.
Prepare Memorandum of Association (MOA) and Rules & Regulations: Draft the Memorandum of Association (MOA) and Rules & Regulations of the society. These documents should include the objectives, rules, regulations, and governing procedures of the society.
Documents and Information Required: Gather the necessary documents and information, including the identity and address proofs of the governing body members, along with passport-sized photographs.
Registered Office Address: Provide the address of the registered office of the society. This will be the official address for all communication related to the society.
Application for Registration: Submit the application for registration to the concerned Registrar of Societies or the relevant authority in your state. The application should include the MOA, Rules & Regulations, and other required documents.
Approval and Registration Certificate: The Registrar will examine the application, and if all requirements are met, they will issue a Registration Certificate. This certificate confirms the legal existence of the society.
Bank Account and PAN: Open a bank account in the name of the society and obtain a Permanent Account Number (PAN) from the Income Tax Department.
Compliance Requirements: Ensure compliance with the rules and regulations under the Societies Registration Act, as well as any other applicable laws and regulations.
The specific documents required for society registration may vary slightly depending on the state in India where the society is being registered. However, the following are the commonly required documents for society registration:
Memorandum of Association (MOA): The MOA should include the name of the society, its registered office address, objectives, details of governing body members, and other essential information.
Rules and Regulations: This document outlines the internal rules, regulations, and procedures governing the functioning of the society.
Affidavit and Declaration: The governing body members may need to submit an affidavit affirming their eligibility and that the information provided in the documents is true and correct.
Identity Proof: Identity proof documents (such as Aadhar card, passport, voter ID, or driver’s license) of all governing body members are required.
Address Proof: Address proof documents (such as utility bills, bank statements, or rental agreements) of all governing body members are needed.
Passport-sized Photographs: Passport-sized photographs of all governing body members are generally required.
No Objection Certificate (NOC): An NOC from the owner of the registered office premises is often necessary.
Minutes of Meeting: Minutes of the meeting where the decision to form the society and appoint the governing body was taken may be required.
Authority Letter: An authority letter authorizing one of the governing body members to submit and sign documents on behalf of the society.
Registered Office Address Proof: Documentary proof of the registered office address, such as a utility bill or rent agreement.
Consent Letter: Consent letters from all governing body members agreeing to become members of the society and serve in their respective positions.
Power of Attorney: If any governing body member is appointed through a power of attorney, a duly executed power of attorney document may be required.
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Societies, as non-profit organizations, offer various benefits to their members and the communities they serve. Some of the key benefits of societies include:
Social Welfare: Societies work towards social welfare and community development by addressing various social issues, such as poverty, education, healthcare, and women empowerment.
Voluntary Participation: Membership in a society is voluntary, allowing individuals to actively participate in activities that align with their interests and passions.
Collective Action: Societies provide a platform for individuals with similar goals to come together and collaborate on projects, amplifying their impact through collective action.
Community Building: Societies foster a sense of community and belonging among their members, encouraging collaboration, networking, and mutual support.
Charitable Activities: Many societies engage in charitable activities, providing assistance to underprivileged communities, disaster-affected regions, and marginalized groups.
Education and Awareness: Societies often conduct educational programs and awareness campaigns on various issues, helping to spread knowledge and create informed citizens.
Advocacy and Policy Influence: Societies advocate for social causes and can influence policies and government decisions, creating positive change on a broader scale.
Cultural Preservation: Cultural societies focus on preserving and promoting cultural heritage, art, and traditions.
Environmental Conservation: Environmental societies work towards conservation, sustainable practices, and creating awareness about ecological issues.
Skill Development: Some societies offer skill development programs and workshops to empower individuals and enhance their employability.
Social Support Networks: Societies create social support networks, providing a sense of belonging and emotional well-being to their members.
Transparency and Accountability: Societies are expected to maintain transparency in their operations, finances, and activities, ensuring accountability to their members and the public.
Inclusive Development: Societies work towards inclusive development, aiming to uplift all sections of society, including vulnerable and marginalized populations.
Research and Innovation: Societies may contribute to research and innovation in various fields, leading to the development of new solutions and technologies.