Chicago Nonprofit Attorney Provenza
Lobbying & Political Activity Regulations For Illinois Nonprofits
For many nonprofits in Illinois, lobbying or other political activity may be a core function for the nonprofit’s charitable givings. Nonetheless, because many nonprofits are also tax-exempt organizations, there is a wide array of rules and regulations governing a nonprofit’s ability to lobby the government or engage in political activity. If your charitable organization inhabits some area of the political sphere, it is essential to have a Chicago nonprofit attorney at your side.
With decades of experience, not-for-profit lawyer James C. Provenza has helped many organizations to lawfully and effectively lobby or otherwise engage in political activity. To see how your organization can better work with the government, call James C. Provenza & Associates, PC in Glenview, IL, at (847) 729-3939.
Under IRS rules, there are many different types of nonprofit organizations, some of which mostly engage in political activity. The 501(c)(4) organizations, also known as social welfare organizations, can often conduct political activity without restrictions. For 501(c)(3) organizations, however, they cannot intervene on behalf of, or in opposition to, candidates for local, state, or national office. This is a very important restriction to remember, and if a 501(c)(3) does intervene, the IRS could pull its tax-exempt status.
Not-for-profit organizations can conduct and fund lobbying activities up to a certain amount. In this regard, the word “lobbying” refers to:
- Communicating with elected officials or their staffs about specific legislation
- Communicating with government officials who may participate in formulating legislation (related to the communication)
- Communicating with the general public that refers to and express a view of legislation (and encourages the public to take action)
As such, there are certain methods of lobbying that do not fall under this definition, including:
- Influence non-legislative action
- Educational non-partisan analysis
- Technical advice
- Self-defense communications
Contact Not-For-Profit Lawyer James C. Provenza Today
If you are setting up a nonprofit organization in Illinois for political or lobbying purposes, you need to be very diligent about how you conduct your activities, especially in terms of communication and fundraising. For this reason, among others, you can aid your organization’s political and/or charitable goals by making sure an Illinois nonprofit attorney provides counsel and legal guidance.
No matter the specific activities, Chicago attorney Provenza will provide the necessary legal presence to help your nonprofit organization conduct lawful political and lobbying activities. For a free consultation with attorney Provenza, call our Chicago non-profit law office at (847) 729-3939.