Starting a Nonprofit: Environmental as a 501(c)(3) Charitable Purpose

An environmental purpose is not one of the seven exempt purposes specified in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code (the “Code”). However, many environmental organizations qualify for exemption under 501(c)(3) because their activities further charitable, educational, and/or scientific purposes. Although there is no explicit mention of environmental purposes in the statutes or regulations defining […]

Lorman Webinar: Complexities of Starting a Nonprofit in California

Erin is presenting a live webinar titled, Complexities of Starting a Nonprofit in California, for Lorman on October 13 at 10:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. PST. Here is the description of the program: This topic will cover the process of forming a California nonprofit entity, going through the legal considerations involved in each step in detail. We will also cover […]

IRS TE/GE FY 2017 Work Plan

Last week, the IRS Tax Exempt and Government Entities (TE/GE) division issued their 2017 work plan. The document summarizes strategy and compliance from fiscal year (FY) 2016, as well as a plan for the coming FY 2017. As covered by the Nonprofit Law Blog last year, TE/GE currently focuses on 5 strategic areas for continuous […]


The Nonprofit Law Blog has been writing about SOCAP (Social Capital Markets) since 2010, and I am thrilled to be attending and covering the annual SOCAP conference this year. SOCAP16 is gathering impact investors, social entrepreneurs, foundations, corporations, global nonprofits, and other valuable strangers all contributing to a vibrant marketplace for socially, environmentally and economically […]

Nonprofit Corporation Legal Audit

All too often, whether a nonprofit corporation is legally compliant in its operations receives attention only after a conflict or issue arises. Instead, a nonprofit corporation can better prevent such conflicts and protect itself through regular legal audits of its corporate governance, federal and state tax exemption, other federal tax law matters, employment and volunteer […]

Highlights from the Conference on Charitable Giving 2016

Last week, I had the privilege of attending the Conference on Charitable Giving at Stanford University, organized by the Silicon Valley Community Foundation and Stanford University’s Office of Planned Giving. The conference focused on developments and emerging practices in philanthropic advising, with breakout sessions for all levels of practitioners and advisors in the field of […]

Foreign Corporations and the Application of California Nonprofit Laws

A foreign corporation, a corporation formed under the laws of another state, that conducts business in California may be subject to more of California’s laws and jurisdiction than one might think. Generally, activities occurring in California are regulated by California laws (e.g., employment, health and safety, revenue and taxation). California’s Nonprofit Integrity Act of 2004, […]

Nonprofit Compensation: Tips on Using Comparability Data

Executive compensation can be a tricky area for the board of a nonprofit organization. As we’ve discussed previously, the recommended process for determining the appropriate compensation package for an executive of a nonprofit organization involves conducting a review of what similarly-sized organizations, in the same geographic area, offer their executives (of comparable level). This is […]

Top 10 Events in 2015

The past 12 months have featured a number of major events that have affected, and will continue to affect, the nonprofit sector. In 2015, nonprofits mobilized to help with major crises, including the almost 8.0 magnitude earthquake in Nepal, the influx of migrant and refugees seeking new homes, and the continued socio-economic and racial inequalities […]