While nonprofits may have a much different endgame in mind than their corporate counterparts, they can glean many benefits by incorporating a more diverse cadre of community members on their board rosters. The fresh perspectives and experiences that new and different members bring to the table result in organizations that are more nimble, effective, and ultimately better equipped to carry out their mission.
Fiduciary duties, as codified in state law, board bylaws, and common practice, are quite simply a set of rules to ensure that boards are run effectively, lawfully, and with the best interests of their mission in mind. Here, we’ll look beyond the legal jargon to distill the legal and ethical responsibilities of board members to oversee the management of and ensure accountability to your nonprofit organization.
Now is the time for thoughtful and decisive action. But how does your board do this when you can’t physically convene? Hope isn’t lost. Here’s what you need to know to hold an emergency board meeting.
We’ll spare you the pandemic intro; we know that nonprofits are acutely feeling the effects of the current financial crisis. And uncertainty about COVID-19 virology and what a “new normal” might look like is frustratingly confounding. But now is not the time for “magical thinking,” according to a panel of experts recently convened by BoardSource. We participated in their webcast to learn more about how nonprofits can best navigate the hard decisions ahead.
Think back to the last time you had to (or at least wanted to) confront your boss about micromanaging your work. Now imagine having ten bosses instead of one. You’ve just stepped into the shoes of your nonprofit’s executive director. While we might all like to cast aside the possibility of an overreaching board member in our organizations, even the most well run nonprofit boards will deal with difficult board members at some point. Boards are full of, well, humans, who have a unique set of personal experiences, emotions, and motivations that influence on their job as a director. Sometimes, that can lead to conflict that is uncomfortable, unproductive, and even contrary to the organization’s best interests.
Delegating activities to committees and other qualified individuals can be helpful for nonprofit boards that are short on the time or expertise needed to carry out certain functions. For example, nonprofit boards typically delegate the day to day management of the organization to officers such as the C.E.O./Executive Director. Boards also delegate specific tasks to committees who can devote more time to particular matters.
On March 27, 2020, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act”) became law. The CARES Act provides $349 billion in benefits for small businesses, including qualifying nonprofit organizations. Specifically, certain nonprofits are eligible for the Paycheck Protection Program and the expanded Economic Impact Disaster Loan program (EIDL). The CARES Act also provides payroll tax relief and expands the charitable deduction to all taxpayers for one year to incentivize charitable giving.
Force majeure has become the word “du jour”; French for “superior force,” it refers to a principle of contract law in which parties to a contract can limit their liability and performance obligations. In the simplest terms, it allows parties to suspend or discontinue the performance of contractual obligations in cases of emergent circumstances beyond the parties’ control. It may also operate to limit contractual liability. But its practical application is nuanced. Here’s what you need to know:
On March 18, 2020, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (the “Act”) was signed into law, and it goes into effect on April 2, 2020. It is the first relief package approved by Congress and requires certain employers to provide employees with emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.
Meeting minutes need to record the proceedings in a way that is simple, unambiguous, and accurately reflects the wishes and actions of the Board. A simple rule of thumb is that minutes should contain enough detail to reflect the steps that the Board took and any critical discussions that took place. Well drafted minutes are essential evidence that the directors fulfilled their fiduciary duties.
Fiscal sponsorship is when a nonprofit organization accepts tax-deductible donations on behalf of another organization that does not have 501(c)(3) status. Solicitations are made in the name of the fiscal sponsor and therefore permit the sponsored project to rely on the sponsor’s IRS determination letter, solicitation registrations, etc.
On January 31, 2020, the IRS announced that it has released a new online version of Form 1023. The revised Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code is reformatted for electronic filing.
On January 21, 2020, the IRS issued guidance detailing how nonprofits can apply for refunds of the repealed “parking tax.” Recall that in December 2017, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act imposed an unpopular and widely criticized 21% tax on employee transportation benefit expenses incurred by nonprofits. The transportation tax, or “parking tax” as it came to be known, was retroactively repealed in December of 2019. The retroactive nature of the repeal creates an opportunity for nonprofits that paid the tax to seek refunds.
At the close of 2019, Congress passed legislation that has a significant impact on nonprofits. On December 20, 2019, the “Further Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2020,” also known as H.R. 1865, became law. This act includes two provisions that significantly impact nonprofits:
The simplification of the excise tax on net investment income; and
The retroactive repeal of the unrelated business income tax on qualified transportation fringe benefits.
Arizona has a robust system of state charitable tax credits that permit taxpayers to direct their state tax dollars to […]
There is no doubt that 2020 is going to be an exhilarating year for nonprofits. Fundraising is more competitive than […]
Your Privacy and Legal Notice Webpage cannot be a last-minute matter anymore but must be a prominent feature on your entire website and be composed of words that the average user can comprehend without the need for a lawyer.
Many non-profit’s use the 51% benchmark for a quorum as a concession that directors will not be able to attend all meetings, but having a majority of board members in attendance for official business ensures a representative cross-section of participation which will not simply reflect the will of a very small clique of directors. However, organizations that value strong hands-on participation by board members may set a higher quorum requirement to encourage meeting attendance and broader participation.
Carrying out these duties as the Secretary is crucial to the smooth functioning of all nonprofit corporations. The role of […]
A “UBIT blocker” is a for-profit corporation that is wholly owned by a tax-exempt organization, but whose activities are not attributable to its tax-exempt parent.