The scope of a management committee or board’s responsibilities is determined by the nature of the activities the organisation engages in, its legal structure (if any) and the relevant legal and regulatory compliance requirements applicable to its activities.

In this section of BoardPASS training, we will explore the legal responsibilities of company directors and typical duties assigned to company secretaries. In addition to the video resources provided, you will find the summary BoardPASS Corporate Governance Handbook a valuable resource for both you and your fellow board or committee members.

In addition to understanding the legal responsibilities arising from company law, remember that:

– If you have staff, employment laws must be adhered to
– Health and safety should be managed effectively and at the appropriate level in the organisation
– Responsibilities arising from laws relating to data protection and equality should be adequately addressed
– If the organisation has a CHY number i.e. is categorised as a charity by the Revenue Commissioners, then upcoming reporting requirements as set out by the Office of the Charities Regulatory Authority will need to be managed

Companies, and the boards responsible for running them, may also have to ensure that other legislative requirements are met, particularly where activities relate to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable adults.

In essence, directors and trustees should remember that the overarching responsibility of a board or management committee is to manage risk. This is where an understanding of the scope of an individual board’s governance responsibilities begins – and ends.