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Difference between a Trust and Society

To begin with, we shall see what a trust is. A trust is legal arrangement devised in order to legally entrust a person or a group of persons with the property for the use or benefit of some other person or group of persons. On the other hand, a Society is an association of a set of persons who get into the association for the fulfillment of a goal, which is inspired by social or community service and described under the Societies act.

Coming to the Section 8 companies, these are registered under and governed by Companies Act 2013.  A section 8 company may be formed for promoting a charitable object pertaining to art, commerce, science, health and so on. It is to be noted that Section 8 companies enjoy all the privileges and are subject to all obligations that apply to Limited Companies.

The distinction between a Trust and a Society lies in the expression of the purpose of their creation itself. They can be easily differentiated based on purpose of establishment. A Trust requires at least two people coming together for its formation whereas a Society must have a minimum of seven persons coming together to set it up.

What is a Trust?

A trust can be either private or public. Private trusts are governed by the Indian Trusts Act, 1882 and are used for private purposes, such as running a private estate or institution. For doing a charitable work for public, Public charitable trusts can be set up. India doesn’t have a national level law to govern charitable trusts, however; few states have enacted Public Charitable Trusts Act and NGO trust registration has to be done.

What is a Society?

Society is also a legal form that NGO generally takes. A society is an association of several individuals combined for the promotion of a common cause without any monetary gain. Such form of organization is governed by the Societies Registration Act, 1860. Societies are usually registered for the advancement of charitable activities like sports, music, culture, religion, art, education, etc.

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Note: This Post was last updated on March 1, 2022

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