Effective partnership paves the road for the take off of Lithuanian endowment regulations
After three years of active advocacy efforts, Lithuanian civil society organizations can finally see the endorsement of their success: legal provisions that open doors to the creation of endowed foundations in this country are on their way as the new law reaches the Parliament.
Concept of endowment and its potential applications by foundations had been of a great interest for Lithuanian Civil Society and businesses for a long time. Real movement towards legitimization of these funds has been started by the group of national civil society organizations, notably NGO law institute, Human rights monitoring institute, Civic Responsibility Foundation, and Joint Stock Company “Integrity”. The four organizations have all together prepared the first draft of laws, outlining the potential organizational framework, tax benefits, accountability and control of endowed foundations. These proposals had become very handy since Lithuanian Government had finally confirmed the conception of NGO development in January2010 and the Ministry of Justice, lead by its minister Remigijus Simasius, was able to take them forward. After one year of drafting, consultations and auditing by various experts and institutions, the law has been finally backed up by the leaders of the Government and is now awaiting for its final exam in the Parliament.
Group’s work was recognized by the Ministry of Justice to be the Best Legislation Initiative of the Year 2009. Leaders of this project would like to thank ECNL and EFC for the advice and research material, which has provided the background understanding, crucial for the design of current proposals.