Man on the phone at a computer reviewing document

Is your not-for-profit thinking about merging or restructuring? Recently, the IRS made the process easier for some organizations. Under previous IRS rules, nonprofits were required to file new exemption applications when they made certain changes to their structure. Each change was seen as creating a new legal entity that needed an exemption application. Under Revenue […]

A women presenting a clipboard of data charts

To fulfill their fiduciary duties, your not-for-profit’s board needs information. You don’t want to bog them down with superfluous reading material. But there are three general types of information you should share. The first is financial, including copies of your Form 990, audit results and quarterly financial reports with income and expense information. The second […]

A hand holds out a money bag

Certain activities can increase a not-for-profit’s risk of losing its tax-exempt status. These include ignoring the IRS’s private benefit and private inurement provisions. A private benefit is any payment made by a nonprofit that’s beyond reasonable compensation for the services provided or goods sold or for services or products that don’t further your tax-exempt purpose. […]

Many not-for-profits use fundraising methods that cross state boundaries. If yours is one of them, it may need to register in multiple jurisdictions. But keep in mind that registration requirements vary, sometimes dramatically, from state to state. For example, some states exempt certain nonprofits from registering and others require them to register but drop annual […]

Many not-for-profits increase their occupational theft risk by devoting too little of their budget to internal controls, placing excessive trust in staffers and volunteers and failing to punish fraud perpetrators appropriately. Board members who lack the financial knowledge to spot irregularities are another risk. Because your organization likely can’t afford any fraud losses, you need […]

If philanthropy is an important part of your estate planning legacy, consider taking steps to ensure that your donations are used to fulfill your intended charitable purposes. One way to help preserve your charitable legacy is to place restrictions on the use of your gifts. For example, you might limit the use of your funds […]

If your not-for-profit doesn’t have an accountable plan, you generally must submit employee reimbursement payments on W-2 forms, withhold applicable taxes and pay the employer portion of employment taxes. Why not avoid these steps and save taxes for both staffers and your organization? Accountable plans can be informal. However, expenses covered must have a business […]

As in the for-profit world, sometimes not-for-profits need to spend money to make money. This is particularly true when it comes to fundraisers. At the same time, it’s critical that you make a budget and stick to it. Estimate expenses for such items as facility rental, food and drinks and entertainment, and then scrutinize the […]

If you haven’t revisited your not-for-profit’s bylaws recently, they may not be as effective as they could be. Your bylaws should cover your nonprofit’s broad charitable purpose and provide procedures for resolving internal disputes, such as the removal and replacement of a board member. If you decide changes are needed, first check to see if […]

The IRS’s staffing shortages have been well publicized. But it’s a mistake to assume that the agency has stopped scrutinizing not-for-profits. Don’t panic if you receive an audit letter. The letter will inform about whether the IRS is conducting an in-person, field audit or a correspondence audit. This second type simply requires you to send […]