Starting a non profit organization: steps involved
Now that the decision to start a non profit organization has been made ,you need to get to work immediately to incorporate it as a non profit organization and to apply for a tax exempt status.Described below is a list of steps that you need to take to incorporate your non profit.
• The first and the most important step in this process is to draft a mission statement.The mission statement should describe the purpose and the scope of activities of your charitable organization.
• The very next step is to recruit board members. Every state has different requirements for the number of board members.However,if you do not plan to incorporate then at least get together an advisory group to guide you through out the process of setting up the organization.
• A very important third step is to hire a lawyer, A lawyer will be a great help to you to file your articles of incorporation and also to apply to the IRS for a tax exempt status.In the future too he will prove to be very handy to help you with other legal formalities and also to review your personnel policies.
• Then comes the opening of a bank account for your organization. Here you should ideally choose a bank that has experience with new and small non profits.
• Now get hold of an accountant to set up a basic process of bookkeeping for your organization.
• Draw up the articles of incorporation.The secretary of state’s office will provide you with a template for this.The articles help to give a legal description to your organization and also assign powers to the board. The articles need to be approved by the board and then these are required to incorporate your non profit in your state.
• Now the bylaws for the organization need to be drafted and then approved by the board. The bylaws provide information regarding the operation and day to day management of the board.
• When all this is done you now need to file for incorporation with your state.Once again the secretary of state’s office will provide you with the requirements of incorporation for your state.you can also check up the website of the IRS where you can find the appropriate office to apply in.
• Now you should apply to the IRS for tax exempt status.
• Another vital point that needs to be taken care of is to find a good insurance agent,since you would be needing liability insurance,property insurance and later ven workmen’s compensation,health and life insurance benefits for your staff,