Just a friendly reminder that if your nonprofit’s fiscal year
ends December 31st, your filings are DUE May 15th.

Filing your annual financial data with the IRS is a crucial
way to maintain your 501c3 status. You don’t want your 501c3
status to be revoked like so many nonprofits did last year.

We’re offering a discount on our nonprofit tax filing services.
Remember you must file your 990 tax filing by four and one half
months after the end of your fiscal year. Give us a call to find out more.

We will throw in handling your annual state compliance as
well as part of this special offering (your organization
will be responsible for the state filing fees).

Please call us at 800-928-4161 to discuss how we can help
your nonprofit stay compliant as tax season approaches.

Think Again, if you want to be a nonprofit anytime soon!

Get Started Sooner rather than Later so you can Start Applying for Grants as soon as possible!  Many of our clients have heard of CyberAssist, a new way that the IRS is planning to make applying for 501c3 status easier by having an online filing option.  This is exciting to all of us and we look forward to the day when we can use it, but don’t hold your breath.  This year they announced that the filing fee will be greatly reduced for those who file online.  Online filing using what the IRS is calling their “Cyber Assistant” will have a fee of only $200.  That’s $650 less than the typical $850 most nonprofit organizations have to pay to get 501c3 status. 

While this appears to be a compelling reason to wait to file for 501c3 status, the truth is waiting could lead to serious delays that your organization simply cannot afford.  Time is money and every month you spend not applying for 501c3 status is another month that you cannot apply for grants or offer tax deductions to your donors.

The public was told in 2007, 2008, and 2009 to expect the Cyber 1023, and when the IRS announced the reduced fee last year, many were hopeful that this would be the year where they’d finally be able to file online.  Unfortunately, on May 7, 2010, the IRS announced again that the unveiling would be postponed again.

We should not expect to see the online form 1023 application for tax exemption during this 2010 calendar year.  We’re hopeful on behalf of all of our clients and all those good people starting nonprofit organizations that this will change in 2011, but we cannot recommend that anyone count on it. 
When CyberAssist does come online, you can rest assured that our firm will be one of the early adopters of online filing to save your organizations time and money,  We will be here to guide our clients through the process from start to finish.  For now, avoid unnecessary and costly delays and get started now by calling our legal assistants at 800-928-4161.

 Wondering how you can avoid all the paperwork and filing fees for becoming a 501c3 nonprofit organization, but still be able to apply for grants and offer donors a tax deduction?  Fiscal Sponsorship is the solution for your project or new nonprofit.  It’s simple.  As a project or program of an existing 501c3, you can operate your organization, further your mission and help people!  You can even fundraise to cover the start up fees to eventually become a fully operational independent organization.  You need only partner with an existing 501c3 organization who is willing to sponsor your organization.  The purpose of the 501c3 must be able to encompass the work that your organization intends to do.  Our services include determining that the purposes are legally similar enough to enter into this kind of relationship.

 Fiscal Sponsorship is a great way for the existing 501c3 organization to help incubate projects that will further the mission and purpose of your organization.  This looks good for you as an organization and is great for leveraging funds.  These kinds of partnerships benefit everyone involved.

 Below you will find a list of Fiscal Sponsorship Organization across the nation.

 

National


Dance Films Association

48 West 21st Street, #907; New York, NY 10010
tel: (212) 727-0764
email: info(at)dancefilms.org

Dance Films Association was started in 1956 with a mission to foster dance on camera films.  As an international known membership organization, DFA connects artists and organizations, fosters new works for new audiences, and shares essential resources.  DFA seeks to be a catalyst for innovation in and preservation of dance on camera. DFA offers fiscal sponsorship to filmmakers, choreographers, dancers, musicians, and other artists who are creating dance on camera, which covers a wide range of film experiences from experimental to documentary.


Earth Island Institute

2150 Allston Way; Ste. 450, Berkeley, CA 94704
tel: (510) 859-9100

Earth Island Institute develops and supports projects that counteract threats to the biological and cultural diversity that sustain the environment. As an alternative to dozens of separate nonprofits, each duplicating basic administrative functions, EII is a consortium of more than thirty grassroots campaigns, each functioning independently while sharing resources and benefiting from the synergistic exchange of experience, ideas, and energy.
Earth Island Institute provides non-profit sponsorship and administrative services for new and existing Projects. In addition, we provide our Projects with assistance in strategic planning, public outreach, fundraising, and other resources and services that maximize the effectiveness and quality of their collective efforts.

 


Fractured Atlas

248 West 35th St. #1202, New York, NY, 10001
tel: (212) 624-5851

Fractured Atlas is a national nonprofit arts service organization. Our fiscal sponsorship program is open to independent artists and emerging arts organizations nationally working in any artistic discipline. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and approved monthly. Projects manage a sponsored fund through our unique online tool kit on our website and you must have regular access to the internet to participate.

 


New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA)

20 Jay Street, Ste 740, New York, NY 11201
tel: (212) 366-6900
fax: (212) 366-1778
email: sponsor(at)nyfa.org

NYFA’s mission is to empower artists at critical stages in their creative lives. NYFA is the largest provider of grants, services, and information to artists working in all disciplines in the United States.

 

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What Are The Benefits of Trademark Registration?

There are a number of benefits of registration. In the United States, these benefits include:

A registration creates a legal presumption that the mark is valid, the registrant owns and has exclusive rights to use the mark and that the mark is not confusingly similar to other prior-registered marks.

A registration gives its owner the benefit of “constructive use” throughout the United States and internationally for purposes of determining priority. A successful application to register a trademark filed today will prevent anyone else anywhere in the United States from being allowed to adopt a confusingly similar mark tomorrow.

Registrations diminish the likelihood that someone will adopt a confusingly similar mark because they will appear on search reports that entities review when someone is considering a particular mark.

  • Registrants can bring suit in federal court and can recover treble damages under appropriate circumstances.
  • Registrations can be used to block the importation of infringing products if registered with U.S. Customs.
  • Registrations can secure bank loans.
  • A registration may be helpful in domain name disputes.

Additionally, if you have an address on the Internet, it is often the case that a registration from any country can be used to fend off a request from a third party to have the domain name transferred to it or them or simply put on “hold” by the domain name registrar.

Registrations in one country can, in some cases, confer a priority or seniority rights to other international registrations. If you are using a mark internationally or have plans to do so in the future, you should strategize with trademark counsel about how to best take advantage of the various international treaties and the recently-created Community Trademark system.

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If your nonprofit is not up-to-date with its annual filings, it may be at risk of losing its tax-exempt status. Now is the time to take action and get back on track!  If you have not filed an information return – IRS Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-N for three years then you must act now – today!

The IRS is offering a one-time relief program for small nonprofits at risk of loosing their tax-exempt status because they failed to file required returns for 2007, 2008 and 2009.

At-risk nonprofits can preserve their status by filing returns by Oct. 15, 2010! We are here to help you stay compliant. Call us at 1-800-928-4161 for assistance.  Two types of relief are available for small exempt organizations — a filing extension for the smallest organizations required to file Form 990-N, Electronic Notice, and a voluntary compliance program (VCP) for small organizations eligible to file Form 990-EZ, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax.

We at the NonprofitLegalCenter.com can help you with your 990 and state fillings. We offer an Ongoing Support Program for complete guidance for compliance to regulations effecting non profits, in order to further your mission, we offer our law firm’s assistance in maintaining your corporation and tax exempt status for the long term.

Ongoing Retainer Program Includes:

While you retain our services, appointments can be made with an attorney at any time. You may also email us to receive answers to your legal questions.  Our ongoing nonprofit counsel services include preparing your annual state registrations and seven hours of legal consultation annually.  These 7 hours can include filing Form 990 or state tax returns, counseling on leases, employment issues, insurance, guidance on maintaining your status, or review of board minutes.  Give us a call for more details.  The discount you receive by signing up for this package is 30% off the attorney’s normal hourly rate.

If your nonprofit needs assistance staying compliant, we are here to help! Contact us at info@nonprofitlegalcenter.com or 1-800-928-4161 for more information.

 

A nonprofit’s Board of Directors functions as the governing body of the nonprofit and has an overall responsibility for the organization. The role of the Board of Directors is to act as a group making decision to further the purpose of the nonprofit. Some of these decisions and responsibilities are:

1. Provide continuity for the organization by setting up a corporation or legal existence, and to represent the organization’s point of view through interpretation of its products and services, and advocacy for them.  It is the responsibility of the Board of Directors to select and appoint a Chief Executive to whom responsibility for the administration of the organization is delegated, including:

– To review and evaluate his/her performance regularly on the basis of a specific job description, including executive relations with the board, leadership in the organization, in program planning and implementation, and in management of the organization and its personnel.
– To offer administrative guidance and determine whether to dismiss or retain the executive.

 

2. Govern the organization by broad policies and objectives, formulated and agreed upon by the Chief Executive and employees, assigning priorities and ensuring the organization’s capacity to carry out programs by continually reviewing its work.


3. 
Acquire and manage sufficient resources for the organization’s operations and to finance the products and services adequately

4.  Account to the public for the operations and services of the organization and expenditures of its funds, including:

– To provide for fiscal accountability, approve the budget, and formulate policies related to contracts from public or private resources.
– To accept responsibility for all conditions and policies attached to new, innovative, or experimental programs.

5. Determine the organization’s mission and purpose and monitor the organization’s programs and services.

6. Ensure effective organizational planning.

7. Enhance the organization’s public image.

8. Assess its own performance

Tips on Board Recruitment

–          Limited or have no family relations on your Board of Directors, unless a private foundation, because of conflicts.
–          Do not involve business relations due to conflicts.
–          Choose Board Member’s whose skill sets will support the nonprofit’s mission – a lawyer, an accountant, individuals in the business world, person    knowledgeable in the area of the nonprofit’s purpose, or members of the community served by the nonprofit.
–          Select a Board of Directors that is committed to the nonprofit’s mission.

 
This list was compiled from various writers and texts; including: Brenda Hanlon, in In Boards We Trust (as slightly modified by Carter McNamara to be “Nonprofit/For-profit Neutral”) and BoardSource, in their booklet “Ten Basic Responsibilities of Nonprofit Boards.”

 

 

 

 

As a Non Profit you are eligible for a reduced postage rate from the US Postal Service.  If you meet the eligibility requirements, which most Non Profits do, you can pay Non Profit Standard Mail rates, which are approximately 40% lower than regular postal rates.

If you are a Non Profit who sends out periodicals, membership information, mass lettering, newsletters, or other mass mailings, the free application for Non Profit Standard Mailing status will save your organizations time and money.

Determine Eligibility

Non Profits that are eligible cannot have funds that benefit any stockholders or members; they include: not for profit organizations: educational, philanthropic, religious, and scientific groups (501(c)3), agricultural and labor (501(c)5), fraternal (501(c)8, veteran groups (501(c)19).

Note: If you are in the process of applying for tax-exempt status, you can apply for Nonprofit Standard Mail Eligibility while your IRS Non Profit tax-exempt status is pending. The mailer may continue to mail in a pending status until a final decision is reached on an appeal of a denied application.

Application Process

Submit an application form, PS Form 3624, Application to Mail at Nonprofit Standard Mail Rates, as well as the supporting documents to the post office you plan to use.  The necessary supporting documents are:

  • The Non Profit’s formation documents, such as the Articles of Incorporation, charter, or constitution.
  • Proof of nonprofit status or pending tax-exempt status: an exemption letter from the IRS approving tax-exempt status.
  • Additional (but not required) documentation: A list of recent nonprofit program activities, the past fiscal year’s financial statement for the Non Profit, the Non Profit’s budget, and any other documents such as your newsletters or bulletins, minutes of meetings, and brochures (more…)