Proposals to Change the Law for Co-Operatives

Proposals to Change the Law for Co-Operatives

There is currently no specific modern legislation dealing with co-operatives in Ireland. The Industrial and Provident Societies (IPS) Acts 1893-2021 come from another century and do not mirror up to date company law principles. Currently there are 960 Industrial and Provident Societies registered, comprised mainly of various agricultural co-operatives, group water schemes and housing co-operatives.

There are many aspects of good practice set out in company law (in the Companies Act, 2014) that are applicable to co-operatives, either directly or with adaptation.

Consequently the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Employment commenced a consultation on 28 January 2022 on proposals to update the IPS legislation.

Amongst the proposals, it is intended that:

  1. The legislation will cross apply six parts of CA 2014, with amendments needed to adapt to the particular circumstances of co-operatives, relating to:
      • Examinership and
      • Winding up (both of these are already cross-applied in the current IPS Acts);
      • Investigations;
      • Compliance and Enforcement,
      • Receivers and
      • Financial Statements.
  1. The legislation will generally replicate, with some amendments, provisions from other Parts of the Companies Act, 2014 i.e.
      • Directors’ Duties;
      • Charges and Debentures and
      • Functions of the Registrar.
  1. The legislation will also use the relevant parts of Companies Act, 2014 to give assurance to stakeholders in areas dealing with
      • Registration;
      • Corporate Governance
      • Mergers and
      • Strike-off and Restoration.

There are just 12 questions in this consultation and the response deadline is 5pm this Friday 25 February 2022 and responses must be sent to

The full consultation (and response template) is available here.

To ensure your letters of engagement and similar templates are up to date visit our site here where immediate downloads are available in Word format. A bulk discount is available for orders of five or more items if bought together.

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