Starting a Nonprofit

Starting a nonprofit is an exciting and rewarding opportunity, but it can also be challenging. Find important information and services to help guide you through the process: 

Steps to Starting a Nonprofit

Starting a nonprofit corporation can be a challenging process. 

The good news is that you don’t have to go-it-alone.  We are here to help.  Contact us if you could use assistance.  We can complete all of your required paperwork or enroll you in guided training where you DIY (do it yourself)!

1. Choose a Relevant Name

Make sure to check the state-by-state information on the various laws that apply to naming a nonprofit in your state.

2. Assemble a Board of Directors

Select a diverse board of directors (people) that are passionate about the nonprofit mission and have the time and resources to commit to the organization.

3. Draft your Bylaws

Draft your bylaws with guidance from your Board of Directors. These are the operating rules for your nonprofit.

4. Form a Nonprofit Corporation

Nonprofit corporations are formed at the state level. Contact your Secretary of State (or Department of State) to form the corporation in accordance with current state laws. There are fees associated with forming a nonprofit corporation that varies from state to state.

5. Obtain your EIN

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is issued for the purpose of tax administration. If you believe your organization qualifies for tax exempt status (whether or not you have a requirement to apply for a formal ruling), be sure your organization is formed legally before you apply for an EIN.

6. Hold your first meeting to adopt your Bylaws 

According to most State Nonprofit Corporation Acts, nonprofit corporations must hold their first meeting of the Board of Directors within 30 days of the date of its incorporation. During the first meeting of the board, bylaws are adopted and board members are elected to their positions.

7. Complete IRS Form 1023 to apply for your Federal Tax-Exemption

Nonprofit corporations that plan to solicit charitable contributions and grants usually apply for tax exemption first. Section 501(c)(3) is the portion of the US Internal Revenue Code that allows for federal tax exemption of nonprofit organizations. There are many variables associated with becoming a 501(c)(3) organization including qualifying under 1 of 8 charitable purposes including: Charitable, Religious, Educational, Scientific, Literary, Testing for public safety, Fostering national or international amateur sports competition, and Preventing cruelty to children or animals.

Benefits of Starting a Nonprofit

Contribute to Social Good

Nonprofits embody the best of America. These nonprofits are public benefit organizations that exist to improve conditions in the world. The amazing people who found nonprofits do so knowing that they cannot personally benefit. Instead, They are vested in social good.

Separate and Perpetual Legal Existence

Nonprofit corporations are Corporation enjoy limited liability protection. And, while you can’t live forever—your nonprofit corporation can. As long as there is a governing body, the nonprofit still exists.

Nonprofit Income Tax Exemption

Nonprofits that take the additional step of becoming a 501(C)(3) tax-exempt organization are exempt from federal (and most often state) income taxes for income generated from activities related to furthering their tax exempt purposes.

Eligibility for Grants

Nonprofits that are 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, are most generally eligible for foundation government grants and other grants and contributions from individuals and corporations. Having a 501(c)(3) determination from the IRS also allows eligible donors to claim federal income tax deductions for donations to 501c3

Would you like to start AND position your nonprofit for funding?

The Community Heroes Academy offers the best of DIY tools, plus expert guidance to do just that!

The Community Heroes Academy was developed out of an urgent need to support the pre-startup, newly formed, and small nonprofit founders and board members.   Your first few years as a nonprofit organization can be challenging without proper guidance and support.   

Most nonprofit founders are not independently wealthy.  Instead, if you are like most of the founders that we’ve worked with, you are likely exploring options to leave your current job (or you have already left), and you are looking for an affordable way to learn what you need to learn so that you can get funded and further your mission.

consulting, training, learn

Here’s where we can help!

When you join Community Heroes Academy, for a small annual fee, you’ll get access to all of the features below, and more!

Popular Training

We offer growing library of training classes that are LIVE and On-Demand.  Each training was designed with 1 goal in mind:  To help the new and small nonprofits position themselves for funding and sustainability.  

How to Start a Nonprofit

There are specific requirements for starting a nonprofit (tax exempt) organization in every state. Learn what is required of you to start a nonprofit - and - remain compliant.

21 Ways to Fund A Nonprofit

Engage in a lively discussion where you'll learn about 21 proven nonprofit funding models that are being used everyday. Also hear the pros & cons to consider before deciding on a model.

Nonprofit Essentials 101

Attend this class and learn what new nonprofit leaders should be doing in the 1st 12 months to be compliant, build an effective board, secure volunteers, and develop a quarterly plan for funding, growth, and sustainability!

The Art of Grant Writing

This "Zero-Fluff" training provides very specific guidance for completing a solid grant proposal, section by section - with examples that you can actually use. Your proposal also serves as your template for grant-applications. EVERY nonprofit should have one!

What Great Nonprofits Do To Succeed!

Have you ever wondered why some nonprofits succeed and others do not? There is a science to success - even for nonprofits. Attend this workshop and learn what to do in 90 days to jump-start your nonprofit and become "future-proof."

Let's Work Together and Make Great Things Happen!

More Questions?

Call us (Toll Free) +1-800-446-0323 or use the form below to start a conversation and we will follow up with you!
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