Nonprofit Organizations

Without sound legal advice that can head off problems, a nonprofit organization’s entire mission can be at risk.

LegalCORPS assists small nonprofits by connecting them with volunteer business lawyers who can provide high-quality, free business legal services.

Nonprofits face legal issues with both ongoing legal concerns and emerging issues. Some ongoing concerns are common to nonprofit and for-profit organizations alike.  Some are:

  • Human resources, including employment and benefits;
  • Contracts relating to leases, buying buildings, signing state and county contracts;
  •  Articles and bylaws; mergers and dissolutions;
  • Intellectual property (particularly copyright and trademark).

Some emerging issues are unique to the nonprofit sector, however. They include:

  • Special state and federal reporting requirements;
  • Lobbying expenditures limits;
  • Regulations directed at mitigating conflicts of interest and monitoring executive compensation;
  • Tax-related issues around unrelated business income.

LegalCORPS volunteers assist eligible nonprofits after they have incorporated and received tax-exempt status from the IRS. (For eligible religious organizations, they must be qualified for tax-exempt status.) LegalCORPS can help organizations that have not yet incorporated and received tax-exempt status to find the assistance they need to do so.

LegalCORPS volunteers do not assist organizations in litigation or other adversarial proceedings.