A public charity is another term for the coveted Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)3 status. This designation allows all donations made to the charity to be tax deductible for taxpayers. To obtain this designation, the organization must have the proper provisions within the organizing documents.
A 501(c)3 status charitable organization is one that has received a determination letter from the IRS after filing Form 1023 requesting exemption. The 501(c)3 status allows all donations tax preferential treatment. The donor may deduct the gift on his/her personal tax return.
Step three of starting a non-profit organization is gathering the potential board members for the first meeting. In step one; you formed a brain trust to validate the mission of the non-profit organization. In step two; you generated a list of potential board members by identifying sources and creating profiles. In this step, you have to get everyone together, present the mission to the group, get commitments to help, and set a date to legally form the non-profit organization.
I have had many clients come to me to ask how they could start a non-profit organization. The main purpose of starting a nonprofit is to gain the contribution advantage the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) provides. Why do you need the IRS to authorize this? What is the difference between tax exempt and a charitable organization? How does the church fit into all of this?