Do NGOs have to be registered with the government?

NGOs can have a status of a legal entity or, may exist without it (as informal organizations). NGOs need to be registered with the government only if they need to have the status of a legal entity.  In case of an NGO without status as a legal entity, the founders are required to notify the Ministry of Justice on the establishment of an organization. 

What are the legal requirements for registration of NGOs?

In order to register an NGO with the status of a legal entity, a founder (founders) shall apply for registration with the Ministry of Justice (MoJ). The registration process shall take up to 40 days. This period can be extended for 30 days if the MoJ determines a need for “further study.”

What information should be included in the application for state registration of NGOs seeking to obtain legal status?

The following information should be included in the application:

  • When the founder(s) is a natural person – his/her (their) name, surname, patronymic, residence, number and date of issue of their identity document;
  • When the founder(s) is a legal entity – its (their) name, location, and registration number;
  • When an authorized person signs the application – his/her name, surname, patronymic, residence, number and date of issue of their identity document and information about the power of attorney.

Should the application to register be notarized?

Yes, the application shall be signed by the founder(s) or by the person authorized by them, and the signatures of signatories shall be notarized.

What other documents should be attached to the application?

The following documents shall be enclosed to the application:

  • Founding documents – charter and founding agreement;
  • Document on payment of the state duty;
  • When the founder is a legal entity – notarized copies of its certificate of state registration (extract from the state registry) and its charter;
  • When the founder(s) is a natural person – copy of their identity document;
  • When the founder(s) and the legal representative (representatives) of the NGO are foreigners and stateless persons with the right to permanent residence in the Republic of Azerbaijan – the document confirming the right of their permanent residence;
  • A document confirming its legal address (information on the location of the standing body);
  • A copy of the document certifying identity, if a legal representative is appointed;
  • A document confirming payment of capital for the establishment in funds;
  • A document confirming the appointment of deputy chiefs of branches or representative offices of NGOs where founders are foreigners or foreign legal entities;
  • If the application is signed by an authorized representative of founders, the notarized power of attorney for the authorized individual.

In what cases may NGO registration be rejected?

Refusal of state registration shall be allowed in the following cases:

  • When submitted documents contradict the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan and other legal acts;
  • When NGO’s goals, duties, and forms of activity contradict the legislation;
  • The charter of the NGO envisages appropriation of powers of state and local self-government bodies, as well as implies state control and supervision functions;
  • If the titles of state bodies of the Republic of Azerbaijan, the names of prominent persons of Azerbaijan (without authorization from their close relatives or ancestors), as well as the names of famous international organizations are used in the NGO title;
  • If shortcomings that do not cause rejection of state registration are not eliminated within 20 days.

What are the special requirements for establishing a foundation?                  

When establishing a foundation, the minimum nominal capital shall not be less than 10,000 manats. This amount shall be deposited with a bank and a receipt shall be attached to the application on registration of a foundation.