HomeTop StoriesHarry and Meghan's Archewell charity is no longer 'delinquent', says California AG

Harry and Meghan’s Archewell charity is no longer ‘delinquent’, says California AG

LOS ANGELES – The Beverly Hills-based charity founded by Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, were deemed “in good standing” by the state of California on Tuesday and no longer “in arrears” on arrears, the attorney general’s office said.

The change in status means the Archewell Foundation, which initially registered in the state in 2021, can raise money and resume operations in California.

“We have carefully investigated the situation and can confirm that The Archewell Foundation remains fully compliant and in good standing,” a spokesperson for the charity said in a statement. “Payments due were made promptly and in accordance with IRS processes and procedures. In addition, all necessary paperwork was submitted by the Foundation without errors or misconduct.”

Attorney General Rob Bonta’s office did not say when it realized the foundation was “current” with the state’s registry of charities and fundraisers. The update comes a day after speculation about why the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s charity, which previously reported total turnover of more than $13 million, had apparently failed to collect an annual filing fee of $200 after the expiry of May 2023 to pay.

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Bonta issued a notice of default to the foundation this month, noting that the renewal information was incomplete.

A source close to Archewell said on Monday that the group’s first check had been lost in the mail but the payment had been resubmitted, adding that the problem was expected to be resolved within days.

But without further clarification from Bonta’s office or Harry and Meghan themselves, it could be difficult to get to the bottom of the apparent outstanding payment, royal family observers say.

The couple, who stepped back from royal duties and moved to California in 2020, have been in Nigeria to raise awareness of causes they have long supported, including wounded veterans.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom responded Tuesday to coverage of the charity at an unrelated event focused on behavioral health in the Bay Area, telling reporters that the foundation’s setback was “typical.”

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“I just want people to know that they weren’t just following the rules,” Newsom said, “it was a technical paperwork issue that was way overhyped.”

CharityWatch, a Chicago watchdog group that investigates nonprofits, said it considers the Archewell Foundation “unreviewable” as it was only recently formed and does not have enough years of financial activity.

According to state filings, the Archewell Foundation, a name inspired by the couple’s son, Archie, is “an impact-driven not-for-profit organization founded by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex,” whose “core purpose is to uplift and unite communities.” . – local and global, online and offline – one act of compassion at a time.”

Laurie Styron, CEO of CharityWatch, said the foundation appears to be deviating from the norm in at least one aspect: In its 2022 tax return, it reports that its governing body consists of just two people: Harry and Meghan. She said the generally accepted minimum “best practice” in the nonprofit sector is five voting board members, “the majority of which must be independent.”

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In general, “a charity whose board is too small and does not have a majority independent board is not well positioned to consistently make decisions that are in the best interests of the charity or to adequately oversee its activities,” according to Styron. “Charities are not small businesses or hobbies meant to be run by one married couple or family. Instead, they are owned by the public for the public good and are intended to exist as legal entities independent of the interests of the people who run them.”

Diana Dasrath reported from Los Angeles and Erik Ortiz from New York. This story first appeared on NBCNews.com.

This article was originally published on TODAY.com

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