Non-profit lawyers are attorneys that work specifically with non-profits, otherwise known as a 501(c)(3), doing many different things. According to Nonprofit Law Blog, a non profit attorney often assists organizations that don’t have in-house counsel. The tasks they address are numerous, too. Here are a few scenarios when hiring a non-profit lawyer is in your best interests.
1. Revision of Company Bylaws
Non-profits vary widely, ranging from institutions that are focused on everything from healthcare to art. Museums are non-profits, as are hospitals, and they exist in many different sizes. A good example of when to hire a non-profit lawyers is when you want to change bylaws in the articles of incorporation. This means understanding the legalese, filing of different forms, and other state requirements.
2. Tax Filings and Status
One of a non-profit’s most important benefits they have is tax exemption. However, in order to maintain a tax exempt status as a 501(c)(3), there are various types of record keeping and ways to file taxes every year that require a legal eye. If you don’t have in-house counsel, be ready to dole out the funds for a good non-profit lawyer that has experience with the complexity of taxes and filing. There’s much at stake and serious repercussions for non-profits that file taxes incorrectly or late.
3. Legal Problems and Burdens
Unfortunately, at one time or another, a non-profit may get sued, even if they’re technically not in the wrong. For example, if someone trips in an art gallery and sustains in injury, the injured party can easily sue. This is why it’s important to have a reliable non-profit to call up from the first moment of the incident. Personal injury lawsuits get complicated and dangerous very quickly without the involvement of legal protection and guidance.
The non-profit world has its own strict roster of state guidelines, tax and filing rules, and articles of incorporation that differ greatly from for-profit corporations. A non-profit lawyer is an expert in all of these things, and can guide a 503(c)(3) of any size the right way to avoid penalties or confusion when it comes to legal issues.