Non-profit organization and company: changes to be
In line with the change introduced by the Law of April
6, 2010 on market practices and the progressive integration of the Commercial
code in the Code of Economic Law, the concept of enterprise nowadays replaces
the concept of trader, thus gradually erasing differences between commercial
companies, civil companies and non-profit organizations.
"Enterprise” means the pursuance by a legal body or an
individual of an economic scope, on a continuing basis. Disputes between enterprises
(whatever is their legal form) already fall within the jurisdiction of the
Non-profit organizations shall be part of the
renovation process of Belgian company law. This shall be happening within the
next few months through a simplification and modernization of the provisions that
are currently in force. With the exception of the so-called «petites ASBL»,
non-profit organizations shall be considered as carrying out economic activities
and making profits, without restriction or risk of requalification. There will
be no further discussion on whether or not their economic activities are
accessory (except in relation to the tax regime that applies to the profits generated).
The prohibition to allocate or distribute profits
among the members of a non-profit organization shall remain the criteria distinguishing
non-profit entities from companies.
As a result of the forthcoming harmonization, rules on
bankruptcy shall be extended to non-profit organizations, thus logically entailing
an extended liability for their managers.
The new rules applying to non-profit organizations (non-profit
organizations, international non- profit organizations and foundations) and
companies shall be bundled in one single act.
To be continued….