We live in a very advanced society and almost everything that we need are readily available and we have the resources to actually acquire it. But this kind of life is not shared by most people in other countries that are considered third world or as developing countries. However, even in our present society, there are still a number of issues that remain unsolved or unattended by the government. Such that an individual or a group of people who have the same goals and passion for improving the human condition come together to form a nonprofit organization to provide assistance and services to those who need it most. For example, an organization that provides shelter and meals for the homeless, a support group for addicts, or a safe haven for abused women and children, a group for finding a cure on diseases like cancer, AIDS, Parkinson’s or ALS, an organization that sends volunteers to Africa or Asia to build potable water systems, a church group that provide evangelical missions to certain parts of the world and a lot more. Whatever the motivation may be, a nonprofit organization actually do good for those who are not reached by basic social services and this is where they find their niche and help other people.
Starting a nonprofit organization can be intimidating and complex, but it can always be made possible with the help of lawyers like that of San Diego Nonprofit Attorney. We can actually start a nonprofit on our own and do our due diligence in terms of researching and studying the ins and outs of the process, but this can take so much time and effort and it will be on a trial and error basis. To ensure that your nonprofit organization is able to take off and start doing the good things that it intends to accomplish as soon as possible, then hiring the services of a nonprofit attorney is a must. With a nonprofit attorney, you will be able to focus more on building networks and laying out your plans for the nonprofit and the activities you wish to accomplish. Here are a few tips to get you started on your nonprofit.
Organizing the Nonprofit
The goals of your nonprofit will determine how it will be organized, as such you need to first determine its over-arching theme and goal. What does the nonprofit stand for? What does it hope to accomplish? How it is relevant in today’s society? These are just a few of the questions that you need to ask in order to determine the goal of your nonprofit. After which, you need to ask people to join you in achieving this goal, you cannot have a nonprofit by yourself, you need volunteers who will help you attain those goals. Enlisting the help of a nonprofit attorney like that of San Diego Nonprofit Attorney will help you draw the organization’s bylaws and the policies on membership and the articles of incorporation. You probably have a working idea on how to do this but a nonprofit attorney will be able to provide you with the expertise and legal acumen to make sure that your bylaws and articles of incorporation are legal and in accordance with state and federal laws the govern nonprofit organizations.
Board of Directors
Once you have a working group for your nonprofit, you have a set of like-minded people who are willing to volunteer their services and expertise for the greater good, then you are ready to take the next step and that is to elect a board of directors. The board will be composed of key members of your group and will be voted on by the members, in this way fairness and justness are preserved. Then you need to consult with your nonprofit attorney to determine whether the elected board members are in accordance with the organization and board policies, to check for conflict of interest and ethical standards of behavior. The nonprofit attorneys like the firm San Diego Nonprofit Attorney will be able to scrutinize the election process, vouch for its authenticity and draw up the necessary legal documents for this.
Naming the Nonprofit
When you first thought about creating a nonprofit, you probably dreamed of several names by which to call it. So before your nonprofit can really be registered and recognized as a legal entity, it should first have a name. This can be a decision you can do by yourself, but you also need to run this with the board of directors so that it will be a collective decision. On the other hand, you need you nonprofit attorney to check the name of your nonprofit as it will have implications into its nature if for example the difference between calling it a corporation or incorporated. Only the nonprofit attorney can actually discuss this and help you decide which name would be acceptable under the law.
Preparing for Registration
Now that you basically have a goal, a set of bylaws, a board of directors, a name and a nonprofit attorney, the last step would be for your attorneys to file the tax forms and IRS forms and the nonprofit business entity documents so your nonprofit will be legally recognized and thus can enter into legal contracts and agreements. Being a nonprofit means that the organization cannot and will not make profit from the funds it generates from donations and fund raisers. Which also means that the organization is exempted from paying income tax returns. Thus, it is important to be as legally upright as possible especially that nonprofit organizations are not allowed to generate income or profits. Your nonprofit attorneys can determine whether you have complied with all the necessary requirements and everything is above board.
After all those organizing and meetings with the nonprofit attorneys and the filing and registration with the IRS and the state, then you are now set to begin your operation as a nonprofit organization. You can now focus on building your network of volunteers, doing fund raising activities and convincing people to donate to your cause.