Non-Profit News Service No. 408 – AAT upholds Commissioner's decision in SPED case
On 20 December 2013 the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) upheld the Commissioner’s decision to revoke an entity’s endorsement. The AAT confirmed that the entity, The Study and Prevention of Psychological Diseases Foundation Incorporated (SPED), was not entitled to any of the endorsements granted to it in 2005. SPED was neither a ‘charitable institution’ nor a ‘health promotion charity’.
As expressed in its constitution, SPED’s objects were seeking to promote the prevention and control of psychological diseases in human beings and therefore setting out to ultimately create the Ideal Human Environment. The functions of SPED were primarily to operate and fund a research team whose purpose was to research human psychological disease by studying a cross section of human behaviour in a variety of emotional, social and physical conditions, circumstances and environments.
A review of the entity commenced in 2009 and found that SPED did not satisfy the endorsement requirements. Endorsements were subsequently revoked effective from 1 January 2005. The foundation’s objection to the revocation was disallowed and it appealed to the AAT to review the objection decision.
The issues were:
- Is SPED a charitable institution?
- Is SPED a Health Promotion charity?
- If any of SPED’s endorsements were revoked, from what date should revocation take effect?
The AAT found that SPED was neither, at any relevant time, a charitable institution nor a Health promotion charity. The AAT also agreed with the decision of the Commissioner to retrospectively revoke SPED’s endorsements effective from 1 January 2005.
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