- 1 of 153
- next ›
What’s the Plan? Nonprofit Business Planning for Success
October 7, 2015
Planning is key for any nonprofit – as it gets started, as it grows with new funding opportunities and program activities, and as pivotal changes occur (internally and externally) that may dramatically affect its impact. Also essential is strong leadership, legal compliance, and responsiveness to changing circumstances. The following guidance addresses key legal aspects for launching a new nonprofit successfully, along with reminders for keeping existing nonprofits well on track.
Start at the Beginning
No nonprofit venture should begin without a great deal of careful, advance planning. Key questions include the following: Who will serve as leaders? What is the organization’s purpose? What will the organization’s revenue stream look like? Related legal questions include the following: What legal responsibilities will the leaders owe, and to whom? Will the organization’s purpose qualify it for tax-exempt status? And what accompanying legal requirements, if any, will apply for its fundraising activities? Another helpful perspective may be to start with the end in mind: Where will the organization go, and how it will get there?
In short, every nonprofit needs a business plan that includes provision for legal aspects. The plan should include core elements such as the organization’s name, purpose statement, leadership, anticipated funding, planned activities for achieving its purpose, governance structure, and accountability measures. After this business plan is developed, this tool may be used in a variety of ways: guidance for founders; marketing to donors and other supporters; recruiting for new board members; and groundwork for the organization’s IRS Form 1023 tax-exemption application.
NONPROFIT LAW NEWSFEED
IRS Warns of Charity Scams Related to South Carolina Floods
The Internal Revenue Service is alerting taxpayers to possible fake charity scams emerging due to severe flooding this month in South Carolina and neighboring states.
Jerry Brown signs new disclosure rules for nonprofit-funded junkets
Ben Carson calls on IRS to revoke Muslim group’s tax-free status
Washington Times GOP 2016 presidential candidate Ben Carson is going after a U.S.
Donor Privacy is the Focus of Supreme Court Appeal
In early September, The Philanthropy Roundtable filed an amicus brief su
New York Mayor opposes bill for financial disclosures from nonprofit CEOs
Politico New York The de Blasio administration will not support a bill to require heads of nonprofits that receive funding from the city to fill out conflict of interest and financial disc
Veterans group hosting Republican candidate Donald Trump lost nonprofit status
US News and World Report The Internal Revenue Service revoked the nonprofit status of the veterans benefit organization that hosted and sold tickets to a foreign policy speech by Republica
California Gets New Fundraising Disclosure Law
Nonprofit Times, New legislation enacted in California will clarify regulations surrounding fundraising counsel as well as custody or control of funds, among other definitions related to charities.
L.A. Supervisors Reject Nonprofit Exemption in New Minimum Wage Law
Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles County supervisors rejected a push to exempt nonprofits and job-training programs from a plan to increase the minimum wage for workers in county-controlled a
Church ads on public signpost open door for other groups
Free Lance News (Hollister, CA) Allowing religious organizations to use a downtown public signpost for event advertisements—like a church men’s conference promotion currently displayed—me
Changes to U.K. judicial review could leave donors footing charities' legal bills, Acevo warns
Third Sector, Under government proposals, Acevo warns, some donors could be ordered by courts to pay for the whole of a judicial review case. The body for charity chief executives, Acevo,