What is a Friendly Society or Lodge?
A Friendly Society or Lodge is a registered body of persons, unlimited in number, who join together to achieve a common financial or social purpose, or both. A Friendly Society also provides an alternative means of investment and savings for a cross-section of the population who may otherwise have no access to insurance.
Who can join or form a Friendly Society/Lodge?
At present, persons who share a common financial or social purpose are eligible to join or form a Friendly Society. A Friendly Society may also admit persons under the age of eighteen (18).
How do you register a Friendly Society/Lodge?
A Friendly Society is registered by submitting an application to register the society to the Registrar of Friendly Societies. This application must be signed by seven members and the Secretary and must be submitted along with two copies of the rules, together with the names and addresses of the Secretary, the Treasurer and every member of the committee, every trustee or other office intended to be authorised to sue and be sued on behalf of the society and a list of other members intending to join the society in order to constitute a minimum membership of thirty-five (35).
How do you cancel the registration of a Friendly Society/Lodge?
The registration of a Friendly Society/Lodge is cancelled in the following instances:
- at the request of the society;
- if the society has ceased to exist;
- with the approval of the Magistrate assigned to the magisterial district within which the society is situated if the society has been proved to exist for an illegal purpose, has wilfully and after notice from the Registrar violated any of the provisions of the Act or if the registration has been obtained by fraud or mistake.
How many registered Societies are there in Trinidad and Tobago?
Currently, there are fifty (50) registered Societies in Trinidad and Tobago - eighteen (18) Friendly Societies and thirty-two (32) Lodges.
What are the services of the Friendly Societies Division?
Services offered by The Friendly Societies Division include the following:
- Regulates and supervises all registered societies in accordance with the Friendly Societies Act Chapter 32:50.
- Inspection of the financial records of Friendly Societies and internal auditing in accordance with the Act;
- Supervising the administration work for Building Societies;
- Investigating Financial Reports and Annual Returns of Friendly Societies;
- Settling disputes;
- Promoting/Marketing the Friendly Societies Movement- forming junior Friendly Societies
- Hosting Conferences;
- Amalgamation of Friendly and Building Societies;
- Registration and de-registration of Friendly Societies;
- Distribution of Assets of cancelled societies;
- Training officers of the Friendly Societies Movement and Division;
- Planning and executing projects for the way forward for the Division and for the Friendly Societies Movement;
- Investigating complaints by Friendly Societies.
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