Verifying the rules of a cooperative in accordance with the Act on Joint Property
- Nationwide except the Åland Islands
- Public service
In case a cooperative wishes to be organised, it must agree upon rules and send them to be verified by the Regional State Administrative Agency.
Provisions on the Act on Joint Property regulate the rules for the cooperative. The rules and changing the rules of a cooperative must be verified by the Regional State Administrative Agency. The rules will enter into force once the decision gains legal force.
The cooperative’s rules must state:
- the name and location of the cooperative, as well as the joint area or any shared special benefit of the shareholders
- the composition and term of the administrative committee
- who has the power of signature for the cooperative
- when will the general meeting of the cooperative be held and what will it discuss
- justifications for the fees collected from the shareholders
- how the administration and inspection of the financial management of the cooperative are handled
- financial period, which must be no more than four years, unless otherwise provided by Section 32 b, Subsection 2 of the Act on Joint Property, and when the financial statement is made
- how the cooperative meeting is convened and information delivered to the shareholders and
- other essential matters concerning managing the cooperative.
If a representative exercises the power of decision instead of the general meeting, in accordance with the rules of the cooperative, the rules must also include the number of representatives and their deputies, how long their term is and how they are elected.
The Act on Joint Property also regulates a cooperative’s operations and how a joint area is administered.
The cooperative has an extensive discretionary power to decide their rules. However, the following must be given special attention in the rules:
- Several joint areas cannot share the same set of rules. Each cooperative must have their own rules.
- The joint area of the cooperative must be mentioned using the property identifier.
- If a cooperative meeting is convened by announcing it on a local newspaper, the paper in question should be named.
In accordance with the Act on Joint Property, the purpose of the administrative committee is to prepare the cooperative decisions and to enforce them as well as to oversee other practical operations. Each member of the administrative committee must have a personal deputy. The committee will elect a president and vice president from among its members.
Do the following
Submit a written application to the Regional State Administrative Agency in order to verify the rules. The application should include the applicant's contact details and a separate billing address, if need be. Attach the following documents to the application:
- the rules accepted in a cooperative meeting
- a copy of the minutes of the cooperative meeting in which the rules were accepted and
- an account on the legal force of the above-mentioned decisions (the Act on Joint Property, Sections 23 and 23 a).
The application should also separately declare if the cooperative practises such business or professional operations that make it subject to bookkeeping in accordance with the Accounting Act.
The Regional State Administrative Agencies for Western and Inland Finland nationally verify the rules of cooperatives in accordance with the Act on Joint Property. The application is submitted to the registry of the Regional State Administrative Agencies for Western and Inland Finland.
To whom and on what terms
The Regional State Administrative Agency must verify that the rules are legal and will not cause harm to any shareholder.
A fee is charged for the service.
The fees are determined by the Government Decree on the Regional State Administrative Agencies’ Fees in 2019 and 2020. The verification of rules is subject to the same fee, no matter what the outcome of the verification is. If an application is cancelled or unfinished, a part of the fee equivalent to the amount of work will be charged.