Questions Regarding a San Diego Nonprofit or 501(c)(3) - Tax Exempt

Questions Regarding a San Diego Nonprofit or 501(c)(3)

On behalf of Daniel Watkins of Watkins Firm, A Professional Corporation
Posted On November 23, 2018

Do you have questions regarding a San Diego nonprofit or 501(c)(3) entity and need the services of experienced attorneys?  What are the laws in California and how can you conduct the type of nonprofit, tax exempt work you wish to accomplish?  What entity do you need to create and why do you need to form an entity at all?  What is the difference between being a nonprofit and ensuring a tax exempt status?

If you are in the process of organizing to raise more than a few hundred dollars one-time for a charitable purpose you will need to structure an “entity” which protects the individuals associated with the project while establishing the actual structure to raise money, hold assets and even hire workers.  It is important to understand the vital difference between “nonprofit” and “tax exempt” under federal and California law.

The concept of nonprofit is best described as the status of your entity under California law.  A nonprofit entity is formed to conduct activity and raise funds to support a cause or project for a community, public, religious, national or international interest.  It is important to understand California law both in terms of fundraising as well as holding any form of assets.  Each state in the US has their own laws and many have individual registration requirements.  The nonprofit and tax exempt attorneys at the Watkins Firm can provide insight and guidance to keep you in compliance with all laws so that you may focus on your important work.

Tax exempt status is not the same with and is not established through the designation of an entity as “nonprofit.”  Simply establishing a 501(c) or a 501(c)(3) does not mean you are tax exempt.  You will be required to file returns with the IRS and the FTB (and potentially other state entities).  In order to achieve genuine tax exempt status there is an application process for both the IRS and the State of California, each of which has specific and complex requirements to be met.

If you have questions regarding a San Diego nonprofit or 501(c)(3) entity we invite you to contact the Watkins Firm or call 858-535-1511.  We work efficiently to ensure you are in compliance with all laws while preserving as much of your organization’s revenue as possible to achieve your respective goals.

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