The balance sheet of a non-trading concern is on usual lines. Liabilities on left hand side and assets on right hand side. In trading concerns, excess of assets over liabilities is called ‘capital’. Here, in non-trading concerns, excess of assets over liabilities is called ‘capital fund’. The capital fund is built up out of surplus from income and expenditure account.
Generally, in the exercises, the instructions are given as to the treatment of special items. Such instructions are based on the rules of the concern. These should be followed while solving the question. In cases, where no specific instructions are given, the following guidelines may be considered:
1.Legacy: It is the amount received by the concern as per the ‘will’ of the ‘donor’. It appears on the receipts side of receipts and payments account. It should not be considered as income but should be treated as capital receipt i.e. credited to capital fund account.
2.Subscriptions: The members of the associations, as per rules, are, generally, required to make annual subscription to enable it to serve the purpose for which it was created. It appears on the receipts side of the receipts and payments account and is, usually, credited to income. Care must be exercised to take credit for only those subscriptions which are relevant.
3.Life membership fees: Generally, the members are required to make the payment in a lump sum only once which enables them to become the members for whole of the life. Life members are not required to pay the annual membership fees. As ‘life membership fees’ is a substitute for ‘annual membership fees’, therefore, it is desirable that life membership fees should be credited to a separate fund and fair proportion be credited to income in subsequent years. In the examination question, if there is no instruction as to what proportion be treated as income then whole of it should be treated as capital.
4.Entrance fees: This is also an item to be found on the receipts side of receipts and payments account. There are arguments that it should be treated as capital receipt because entrance fees is to be paid by every member only once (i.e. when enrolled as member, hence it is nonrecurring in nature. But another argument is that since members to be enrolled every year and receipt of entrance fees is a regular item, therefore, it should -be credited to income. In the absence of the instructions anyone of the above treatment may be followed but students should append a note justifying their treatment.
5.Sale of newspapers, periodicals, etc.: As the old newspapers, magazines, and periodicals etc. are to be disposed of every year, the receipts on account of such sale should be treated as income, and therefore, to be credited to income and expenditure account.
6.Sale of sports material: Sale of sports material (used) is also a regular feature of the clubs. Sale proceeds should be treated as income, and therefore, to be credited to income and expenditure account.
7.Honorarium: Persons may be invited to deliver lectures or artists may be invited to give their performance by a club (for its members). Any money, paid to invitees, is termed as honorarium and not salary. Such honorarium represents expenditure and will be debited to income and expenditure account.
8.Special fund: Legacies and donations may be received for specified purposes. As discussed above, these should be credited to special fund all expenses related to such fund are shown by way of deduction from the respective fund and not as expenditure in income and expenditure account.
9.Sale of old asset: It is a non-recurring item. It cannot be taken to income and expenditure account. It leads to reduction in asset. Therefore, it is shown by way of deduction from the concerned asset. It is important to note that it is the “book value” that is to be deducted from asset. Profit or loss in such a case is taken to income and expenditure account. Where the book value of asset is nil, the entire proceeds of sale be treated as income.
10.Specific Donations: These are received for specific purpose. For example: Donation for building; Donation for prizes; Donation for pavilion etc. These are capital receipts and shown on liabilities side. It is worthy to note that such donations should not be treated as income because if they are taken to income and expenditure account, it will increase income. The increased income may be utilized for any other purpose. Thus, the purpose of donation will not be served. Such donations appear on the liability side because they create a long term obligation (liability) on the institution. For example a donor may wish that prizes may be awarded year after year out of the income earned on his donations. Such a donation account can’t be closed within a year by transferring to income and expenditure account.
11.General donations: These donations are not for any specific purpose and being a recurring income they are to be treated as income and are shown on the income side of income and expenditure account.
12.Endowment fund: It represents donation for a specific purpose. Here, the object of the donor is to provide a source of permanent income to the institution. Thus, it is shown in the liability side of balance sheet. Any income earned during the year in such fund is added to it and any expenditure incurred during the year is deducted from it.