Frequently asked questions 

If you want to make a real impact on the causes you care about, a CAF Charitable Trust gives you the flexibility to donate, when and where you want. Our FAQs can help answer some of the key questions you may have. 

  • What is the legal structure of a CAF Charitable Trust?
    An individual CAF Charitable Trust is not a separate legal entity. It is purely a named sub-fund of CAF. The Trustees of the CAF Charitable Trust are those of CAF.

    The Donor that establishes each CAF Charitable Trust is known as the Original Donor and in legal and regulatory terms is only an interested third party to any arrangement between CAF and its investment managers and custodians. CAF may give permission to the service providers to provide some reporting direct to the Original Donor.
  • Is my CAF Charitable Trust registered with the Charity Commission?
    You don’t have to register your CAF Charitable Trust with the Charity Commission. We’re a registered charity ourselves and your Trust sits with us, so our registration covers your Trust.
  • Can I name my Trust?
    Yes, you can give your CAF Charitable Trust a name of your choice, e.g. ‘The Smith Family Charitable Trust’. The Trust name may be anything that which has not already been registered with CAF or the Charity Commission. 
  • Am I the Trustee of my CAF Charitable Trust?
    No – CAF acts as Trustee of the Trust.
  • What is the minimum amount I can have in my CAF Charitable Trust?
    The minimum balance of your Trust must be £10,000.
  • Does the CAF Charitable Trust qualify me for Income Tax relief?
    We’ll reclaim and add Gift Aid for every eligible donation made into your CAF Charitable Trust. If you need information on your personal tax situation, please speak to an independent financial adviser.
  • What can't my CAF Charitable Trust do?
    Your CAF Charitable Trust cannot be used to make grants where there is more than incidental benefit to yourself or your family. 

    Your CAF Charitable Trust cannot be used as a fundraising vehicle, in which you are promoting the account for public consideration. If you wish to fundraise for a certain cause/charity please do contact the Private Client team for guidance on the most effective ways to do so. 

    All transactional activity requested and carried out within the Trust, is subject to CAFs review and approval in accordance with our CAF Charitable Trust policies and Terms and Conditions. 
  • What happens to my CAF Charitable Trust when I die?
    You can either pass your Trust onto a named successor or nominate CAF as a beneficiary. This allows you to make gifts to specific charities in your Letter of Wishes.
  • How much does the CAF Charitable Trust cost?
    Our fees depend on your requirements. For more information, view the Individual CAF Charitable Trust Schedule of Charges or contact the Private Client team.

Gifting into your Trust 

  • How can I gift cash?
    Making a cash gift is straightforward, you can make your gift into our onshore or offshore bank accounts depending on your tax situation. Contact our Private Client team for remittance details. 
  • How can I make a share gift?
    Contact the Private Client team and inform us of the type of share gift you would like to make, and we will collect the necessary detail from you, and guide you through the required procedure. We can either work with your broker or with you directly to complete the transfer.

    Proceeds from share gift sales will be settled within your CAF Charitable Trust, or for our Premier Trust service, transfers in specie are also an available option.

    We will reply to your pledged gift with an acceptance letter, following which the arrangements to transfer ownership or sell the outlined asset can proceed. This acceptance letter can be used as evidence of gift applicable for your tax return. 
  • How can I gift non-cash gifts?
    We can accept gifts of land or property, art and antiquities as long as they adhere to our Non-Cash Gift Acceptance Policy Terms and Conditions – we will work with you to establish whether your non-cash gift is feasible.

    Minimum amounts apply, depending on the asset type along with our non-cash 1% surcharge and any additional costs areincurred. 
  • Who can fund my Trust?
    Gifts can be made by any authorised donor, established within the Trust (a maximum of 6 donors per Trust). All donors are subject to CAF’s Customer Due Diligence, which includes identification Verification (ID&V) and collection of the necessary Source of Wealth, Source of Funds information and documentation prior to transferring new gifts.The Private Client team will be on hand to support each donor with this. 

    In addition, gifts can be made by third parties, which include businesses, charities or private Trusts of which our donors are connected to as directors, partners, trustees or beneficiary. 

    The due diligence required to facilitate a third party gift is advanced, however our Private Client team will provide guidance on our requirements.

  • Once a gift has been made into my Trust, who does the money belong?
    From the moment your gift arrives at CAF, you have made an irrevocable charitable donation and CAF takes ownership of those funds.

    Authorised donors and/or signatories can then begin to request grants to charities and make investment requests.

    CAF does have ultimate discretion over all requests received but will always endeavour to fulfill client requests when it is legal and safe to do so. 

Making a grant

  • How do I make a grant request?
    You can submit your grant requests to UK registered charities via your online account or by contacting the Private Client team by email or phone. 

    Please also reach out to the Private Client team if you wish to grant to non registered charitable organisations in the UK or organisations overseas. Following receipt of your request, we will initiate the required verification of the organisation, and keep you updated with progress until your grant is ready for disbursement.

    When making any grant request, it is always helpful for us to know if you wish for the funds to be restricted for a particular purpose and or if you are connected with the beneficiary in any way. 
  • What does 'verifying a charity' mean?
    As a grant making charity, our grants must adhere to both HMRC and The Charity Commission donation rules.

    Additionally, as CAF is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for Anti-Money Laundering purposes, we must conduct all necessary due diligence on donors and beneficiaries to mitigate the rick of fraud and misuse of funds.To do this, we will contact your suggested charity to request details of their governance and charitable activities as well as asking them to tell us how your grant will be used.

    We will follow up with the charity regularly if we are awaiting their documentation. Once we have received all the necessary documents, they will be submitted to our Charity Verification team for approval.  

    Read our guide to Charity Verification.
  • How long will charity verification take?
    UK registered charities and US 501(c)(3) public charities are usually straightforward for CAF to verify and in most cases will be approved within two to three weeks from CAF receiving all of the requested information.

    However, if your selected charity is overseas in a jurisdiction with less stringent charitable regulations, we may be required to carry out some extra checks – this often increases the time verification takes to complete so please be patient with us! This also applies to UK or US organisations who then grant our funds onto other countries – CAF is required to verify each entity who will be controlling the funds, to ensure we can understand how and where the funds will be used.

    If you know someone within your chosen charity who can help us with this process, please let us know – it can help to speed the process along significantly. 
  • How much will verifying my charity cost?
    For the CAF Charitable Trust, no additional verification fees apply. There are however transactional fees for processing of an overseas wire transfer, fees range from £2-£20 depending on the end destination, which will be debited from the Trust. 
  • How long will my charity be verified for?
    Charity verifications are valid for two years, within which time, you can continue to issue further grants if you wish. We do however review and approve each grant to ensure the positions and circumstances at the organisation have not changed since the last grant was issued. 
  • Once verification is complete, what happens next?
    Once we have verified your selected beneficiary, we will process your grant request.

    Payments are usually processed via BACS which takes up to three working days to reach the beneficiary’s bank account, but in certain cases, we will arrange faster, same day payment. 

Managing your Trust online 

  • What can I use my online account for?
    - Submitting grant requests to UK registered charities
    - Submitting Investment requests
    - Viewing your balances, transactions and formal statements of account
    - Viewing all grants and maintaining regular donations
    - Accessing your Trust valuation to monitor investments and performance
  • How can I register for online access?
    To register for online access for your Trust please complete this form.  

    This request will reach us to verify the access and you will receive confirmation within two days that the access has been established. 

Investing funds in your Trust 

  • How do I make a request to invest my funds?
    If you have opted to follow the ‘Self Advised’ investment management option, you can review our investment options available to you here, and when you have decided on which investment you wish to make, you can submit this online via your account or contact the Private Client team to take your instructions forward. 

    If you appointed an authorised advisor to the Trust, the advisor is able make investment suggestions on your behalf and work with the CAF Private Client Team to arrange.

Get in touch 

Please contact our team if we can help with any further queries about the CAF Charitable Trust.


Phone: 03000 123 028

Telephone lines are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm GMT (excluding UK bank holidays)