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Non-Profit Legal Services
The nonprofit sector constitutes a diverse spectrum of nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations fulfilling their missions for the benefit of society at large.
However, the requirements for different types of nonprofit organizations can be overwhelming, and the unique rules and complex regulations that pertain to public charities, private foundations, and other tax-exempt entities under Internal Revenue Code § 501(c) should be carefully navigated. Many nonprofit organizers begin with a robust vision for their organization but relatively little experience in forming a corporate entity, organizing a board of directors, or applying for nonprofit status.
If this is you, retaining counsel should be a part of your organization’s first year budget. Do-it-yourself incorporation can result in mistakes that may impair your ability to raise funds or even avoid tax liability on the organization’s income.
Services & Questions related to Powers of Attorney
Nonprofit Counsel for Your Passion Project
At Quinn, Racusin & Gazzola Chartered, we regularly assist in forming new nonprofit organizations, designing corporate structures, and seeking appropriate tax classifications to help clients effectively realize their vision. We work with clients with varying levels of legal and business sophistication, allowing your new nonprofit to succeed while you focus on fundraising and establishing programs.
QRG assists foundations, public service organizations, research institutes, fundraising groups, and other nonprofit, tax-exempt organizations in recognizing their tax-exempt purposes while allowing them to operate effectively and efficiently. Our areas of focus for our nonprofit clients include accreditation, intellectual property, corporate transactions, labor and employment, governance, regulatory practice, and tax compliance.
Focused on 501(c)(3)
While there are many kinds of nonprofits, the focus of our nonprofit practice is the type of entity that can receive grants and tax-deductible contributions from donors, which is defined by 26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3). To create a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the entity must be organized for a charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, or one of several other purposes recognized by the Internal Revenue Service.
We represent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations by obtaining and maintaining tax exempt status on the federal, state, and local level. This begins with strategic visioning, where we assess your business plan to make sure you have a good chance at successfully gaining 501(c)(3) status. If not, we will suggest tweaks or help you generate alternatives. Once a plan has been adopted, QRG attorneys will help you form your nonprofit corporation (sometimes called a public benefit corporation) and assist you at every stage of the Form 1023 application for tax-exempt status.
Making Sense of Corporate Governance
Generally speaking, nonprofit organizations are corporations that must be incorporated before receiving any tax-exempt status. QRG attorneys will help with filing the Articles of Incorporation, drafting bylaws and other policies that satisfy the rules of DC, Maryland, and Virginia (as well as the IRS), and forming a board of directors. Our attorneys teach our clients how to serve as corporate officers and directors, including how to avoid mistakes that can jeopardize the organization’s nonprofit status. We will also help guide you through the complicated processes of choosing the right bank and accounting firm, hiring employees, and registering intellectual property, if necessary. Finally, we will keep you informed of the many periodic reports that you will have to make to federal, state, and local authorities.
As nonprofits seek support, we partner with them in virtually all aspects of fundraising, including the navigation of charitable solicitation standards, preparation to accept planned giving, and registering as charities with the proper jurisdictions. Even putting a donation button on your website or social media accounts can be seen as a solicitation triggering compliance requirements. Fundraising is a trap for the unwary, but QRG can help you through it.
Attorneys with Public Service Values
QRG is proud of Washington, DC and committed to serving the local community. Our attorneys participate in volunteer events, serve on nonprofit boards, and give back to the community through pro bono representation of low-income DMV residents.