Questions on Nonprofit Law

The following is an archive of answers to basic (and sometimes not so basic) questions on nonprofit law and is intended for informational purposes only.  Nothing here is a substitute for legal advice.  If you would like to discuss your particular situation, use the link below to schedule a free 30 minute call.

I want to file the papers to dissolve my California nonprofit organization.  Can I file the form in person?

There are only two locations where you can file documents with the California secretary of state:  Sacramento and Los Angeles.  However, ...

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If you run a non profit, can you sell items to help fund the organization? For example, can a pet rescue sell dog bandanas and treats if the proceeds goes straight back into running the rescue (buying dog food or covering vet bills)?

Let's start with the heart of your question: can a nonprofit sell items at a markup and use the proceeds to advance the mission? Generally, yes. It is not prohibited or illegal for a nonprofit to do that. But, that general "yes" doesn't mean that there won't be consequences, and a complete answer to the question of consequences involves ...

A nonprofit organization has existed for three years, but has not registered with the California Attorney General's Office.  It has been taking donations and doing other activities, but not much formality or normal meeting records keeping.  What are the consequences of this not registered status:  grounds for investigation?  Or even dissolution?

There are a lot of issues here. If this were to come into my office, we would probably spend a lot of time just talking about the facts and history before giving any advice.

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