2 votes

Anyone have experience in non-profit filing?

We have a local group here who is active in spreading liberty through a non-profit group called Mesa County Patriots. We are still in the process of getting everything finalized on what our legal status is.

Does anyone have advice on what type of filing would be best for a politically active group such as ours? I had heard that maybe becoming a corporation rather than non-profit may be better.

Hoping to start the conversation on how we can best pursue liberty in these type of groups.




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Additional thoughts...

So my GF has a non-profit that focuses on transitioning persons from homelessness to sustainability through a occuptional therapy model. Guess what, she is doing this through complete free market funds with absolutely no funding from the government... awesome right..

My non-profit consists of Ron Paul delegates who mobilized 10x the energy after the primaries. We have had amazing festivals and rallies. If you are in CO check out Mesa County Patriots on FB as we have exciting events coming up and we provide information for other liberty groups in CO that have been working to preserve liberty in our state.

It all depends ...

... on what you want to do and how you want to operate.

There is no such thing as "corporation OR non-profit." The non-profit thing is IN ADDITION TO a corporation or other entity.

Basically, if you want to be involved in political things (such as lobbying or supporting candidates), then the traditional 501c(3) non-profit is OUT because they are for charity and cannot do political activities (if they do, they lose non-profit status).

You will probably want to first form an organization, either a corporation or a trust. Probably a corporation if you want a lot of people involved. You file articles of incorporation as a non-profit corporation with your state. That forms the corporation but does NOT give you non-profit status.

For non-profit status, you then file form 1024 with the IRS. Your corporation can take donations, charge membership fees, but NOT "engage in business." The donations and fees are NOT tax deductible, but the income is tax-free (unless you get into doing business or making certain investments).

The primary purpose must be for something other than politics, but it can engage in political activities.

For SERIOUS political activities, you then form within your non-profit corp. a PAC (Political Action Committee) or a Super PAC. This is where you give money to candidates (PAC) or run ads and do other activities on behalf of candidates but not giving money directly to them (Super PAC). There is also a Hybrid PAC.

Here's a company that does this stuff for people and can give you some info about what is what:
http://www.taxfreecharity.com/politicalactioncommittees.htm

Thanks for the info!

I am leaning more towards filing as an LLC.

Jordan Page posted the below FB post for those that have a non-profit.
https://www.facebook.com/jordanpagemusic/posts/1015258558236...

We do this because we do not want to rely on the GOP to make the changes needed for liberty.

Wow. Just saw that you can file an entity in CO for $1 ...

... by far the cheapest in the country.

As far as LLC goes, it's a great entity in certain situations, but non-profit ain't one of 'em.

If you notice, Colorado Sec. of State shows you can form non-profit corporation, but not non-profit LLC.

If you go LLC and you want that entity to be non-profit, then you will be working with a cat in a dog world. Everybody expects non-profits to be either corporations or trusts, not LLC's. If you try to go LLC, you will have unnecessary headaches.

For non-profit, LLC definitely NOT the way to go. Make it easy on yourself.

Good luck. Sounds like a fun project!

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I was thinking LLC corporation not non-profit.

Now you got me confused. ;-)

You said in OP that it is a non-profit group.

You also said you are active in supporting local races and politicians.

If you want to support politicians, then I think the Super PAC is the best way to go. Here is a quote from Wiki on it:

"Super PACs, officially known as "independent-expenditure only committees," may not make contributions to candidate campaigns or parties, but may engage in unlimited political spending independently of the campaigns. Unlike traditional PACs, they can raise funds from individuals, corporations, unions and other groups, without any legal limit on donation size."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Super_PACs#Super_PACs

You can't give money directly to a candidate, but who cares? Just do the advertising or other activities that the candidate would do with the money you gave them, and YOU get to control it.

Getting further into PAC's, that same web page above that quote talks about connected vs. non-connected PAC's. You would be looking to do a connected PAC, as explained:

"Most of the 4,600 active, registered PACs are "connected PACs" established by businesses, labor unions, trade groups, or health organizations. These PACs receive and raise money from a "restricted class," generally consisting of managers and shareholders in the case of a corporation and members in the case of a union or other interest group."

So, if you set up a regular corporation as your main entity, then only the officers, directors, and stockholders can contribute to the PAC. Same goes for an LLC -- only members (owners) and managers could contribute.

On the other hand, if you set up a "trade group" or other social organization, such as a 501c(4), which is a non-profit organization, then all the members (even if one becomes a member for a $1 donation) could contribute.

Your options are MUCH wider with such a setup. And, in fact, that is exactly why so many big names out there in politics are doing it this way.

Karl Rove's Crossroads. In reality, it is Crossroads GPS, a 501c(4) non-profit corporation combined with American Crossroads, a Super PAC:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Crossroads

Likewise, on the Democrat side, Priorities USA is a 501c4 organization that also has a Super PAC, Priorities USA Action:
http://www.prioritiesusa.org/about

This is how it is done by the big boys. They are the ones who make the legislation (and file the court cases to get the decisions they want), so it is probably the best way to do it.

Unless I am misunderstanding what you want to do.

Bump for non-profit filing.

I am certain many others would like to know..

Josie The Outlaw http://www.josietheoutlaw.com/

"What if the American people learn the truth" - Ron Paul

Perhaps a cooperative?

Forming a co-op might be an option. Or not.

How to tell if a panda's been eyeballin' your woman - next Focus on Pandas

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We have some co-op stuff that is being done on the side. That route is good for some of our farmers and food volunteers for the poor. But our group is very vocal on specific issues and active in trying to influence local races and politicians. This can cause problems with what our status is legally. Unfortunately free speech is not alive and well in America.

Following up

To see if anyone has information on best ways to approach the legal way to form an entity that is bent on restoring liberty to America. Or has stories to tell and mistakes to learn from.

Bump

For morning crew.