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Re: Charitable Foundation

On Fri, 26 May 2000 13:04:04 -0500, Tom Droege <droege@wwa.com> wrote:
*>Chris and all,<br>
*>OK, if this works like I think it will, you will be able to send me a
*>letter &quot;giving&quot; something to tass.&nbsp; I will then send back
*>a letter like you get from other charities stating the value of what you
*>have donated.

*>My lawyer says that getting this status will not be easy.&nbsp; But I

Sorry about the embedded HTML in the quotes above.

I've been a member of some non-profit astronomy clubs and I've seen this
issue arise there. The bottom line in tax deductions for givers is that
the IRS has provided the club with a letter that says "we are satisfied
you are a such and such corporation, here is a Tax Number that you can
reference". That number is used by those giving donations when reporting
or recording such donations, and would be part of the "letter" Tom mentions.
The organization also uses that number in reporting to the IRS.

The IRS has rules and procedures for granting such status, they are different
for new organizations versus existing organizations. The latter have a track
record, the former does not. It is certainly not automatic, as I understand
it, that an organization "gets" non-profit status from the IRS just because
they are incorporated in a particular fashion.  Also, an organization can
lose their IRS status if their records or methods or practices get messed
up. Typically a club gets tired of filing, volunteer organizations are
not always well-operated in that way.

Beyond that, I'm no lawyer or accountant. I know enough to know that none
of this is a mere matter of filing papers. Someone in the coroporation
will have to keep the books, file the tax reports, and persue the IRS
status process. The state where the corporation papers are filed will have
rules about how the corporation is organized, the IRS will have additional

Most states have a lot of info available for small companies. Also
the local Chamber of Commerce and local universities can be helpful, they
often support small business efforts. This is a very popular activity these
days, both starting a business and providing support for new businesses.

Herb Johnson

Herbert R. Johnson              http://pluto.njcc.com/~hjohnson
hjohnson@pluto.njcc.com         voice 609-771-1503, New Jersey USA
             amateur astronomer and astro-tour guide
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