If you have a non profit operating here in Illinois, then fundraising certainly serves as the backbone to your entire operations. Without professional fundraising help for many Illinois nonprofits, it would be quite difficult for the nonprofit to continue providing its charitable services to communities and individuals who really need it. If your nonprofit requires legal guidance and representation for professional fundraising, or you need help setting up professional fundraising while maintaining complete complicity with Illinois and federal laws, then call Chicago IL nonprofit attorney James C. Provenza as soon as possible.
At James C. Provenza & Associates, P.C., we’ve always upheld a deep passion for the volunteer and charitable work that occurs all across the state. For this reason, we work closely with our clients to help them conduct their affairs in a legal, yet advantageous and tax-friendly manner. For one of the leading experts on nonprofit law in Illinois, don’t hesitate and call Chicago attorney Provenza today. In the meantime, you can learn a little more about professional fundraising below.
Nonprofit Fundraising Registration in Illinois
The most basic rule of fundraising for Illinois nonprofits is that donors must give away their funds. The donors cannot receive goods and services for their gifts, nor can they obtain dividends on their investment. The most a donor can receive is a little praise and recognition, but he/she cannot receive monetary goods for his/her donations.
In addition to this basic rule, Illinois nonprofits may need to register with the Illinois Attorney General’s Charitable Trust and Solicitations Bureau if the nonprofit plans on fundraising in the state. There are some organizations that may be exempt from fundraising registration, including:
- Religious organizations
- Educational institutions
- Membership organizations
- Appeals for single individuals
- Political organizations
- Veterans organizations
Keep in mind that these organizations, as well as other organizations exempted from registration, may have to fill out other paperwork, such as annual returns or, in the case of religious organizations, specific documentation for exemption (Illinois Form CO-3, Religious Organization Exemption Form and Form CO-1, Charitable Organization Registration Statement). The initial registrations will last indefinitely, and there are often no renewal requirements.
To file with the State, you’ll need to fill out the required registration documentation, pay the filing fee, and include other documentation. You can use the Uniform Registration Statement or Illinois Form CO-1, Charitable Organization Registration Statement. Some of the included documentation should contain:
- Articles of incorporation
- Copies of IRS Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-PF for the last three years, if any
- Copy of the IRS Determination Letter or, if the IRS tax-exempt determination is pending, a copy of IRS Form 1023 or 1024
- Copies of all contracts with professional fundraisers
- Certificate of Authority to do business from the Illinois Secretary of State
Nonprofit Professional Fundraiser Requirements in Illinois
Nonprofits must register if using a professional fundraiser, but in addition to registration, the professional fundraising (or fundraisers) must also complete some registration requirements, including:
- Paying a $100 filing fee, payable to the “Illinois Charity Bureau Fund”
- Form PFR-01, “Professional Fund Raiser Registration Statement”
- Form PFR-06, “Professional Fund Raiser (PFR) List of Charities & Contracts”
- A copy of all listed contracts from Form PFR-06 along with the $25.00 Annual Filing Fee for Each Contract Filed or on File
- Form CS-6, “Professional Fund Raisers Bond”
- Form PS-01, “Professional Solicitor Registration Statement”
- Partnership Agreement or the Articles of Incorporation from the Professional Fundraiser
- Certificate of Authority to Transact Business in Illinois
- List of business locations used for fundraising
It is important to note that failing to file the registration requirements in a timely manner will result in a $1,000 late filing fee. Professional fundraisers will also need to file a 6-month financial report (due on September 30 of each year) as well as an annual financial report (due on April 30 of each year).
Contact James C. Provenza & Associates for Your Chicago Nonprofit Attorney
Professional fundraising can be an extremely helpful endeavor to make sure that your nonprofit organization has enough funds to conduct its charitable activities. However, with the requirements to retain your nonprofit’s tax-exempt status, as well as the additional requirements for fundraising operations and professional fundraising operations, it’s critical to have a legal expert to thoroughly guide you through the process. If you’re planning to use a professional fundraiser for your nonprofit, call James C. Provenza & Associates today at (847) 729-3939.