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Non-Profit Organizations

Non-profit and charitable organizations offer significant benefit to local communities and around the world. The tax attorneys at Kirton McConkie support such efforts with legal and business counsel to ensure tax-exempt entities are structured properly from the beginning to take advantage of all available benefits and to avoid governance or financial problems down the road.

Our attorneys work with clients ranging from small groups just getting started to large multi-billion-dollar institutions, including private foundations, universities and their affiliates, religious organizations, trade associations, healthcare organizations, membership organizations and advocacy organizations. Our non-profit clients have operations all across the United States and in many other countries.

The Kirton McConkie non-profit attorneys work closely with tax-exempt organizations on start-up plans, entity formation, organization, governance, state and federal compliance, unrelated business income tax, fundraising, planned giving strategies and other critical legal and business matters.

In addition to day-to-day advising, we have experience with structuring and negotiating a variety of major business deals on behalf of non-profit clients, as well as with defending our clients’ interests in IRS examinations, private letter ruling requests and similar matters.

Our attorneys have also amassed considerable practical experience in running non-profits by serving as board members or in other roles for various non-profit organizations. The attorneys who specialize in working with non-profits offer these services:

  • Consulting and assisting clients with the initial stages of entity formation and issues surrounding qualification for tax-exemption as well as preparing applications to secure federal and state tax-exemptions.
  • Preparing organizational documents such as articles of incorporation, bylaws, policies and trusts.
  • Assisting with general business, operations and policy matters related to real estate, intellectual property, contracts, contributions, insurance, employment, employee benefits and other issues pertinent to the organization, including unrelated business income tax issues.
  • Advising on non-profit involvement in complex structures involving commercial entities, including for-profit subsidiaries, partnerships and joint ventures.
  • Advising private foundations, organizations maintaining donor-advised funds and other grantmakers on sophisticated grantmaking programs, including expenditure responsibility grants, equivalency determinations or program-related investments. 
  • Helping clients comply with the U.S. private foundation rules in their programmatic activities and in their investments, including private equity, and correcting previous violations.
  • Advising on qualification as a publicly-supported public charity, supporting organization or private operating foundation.
  • Advising U.S. charities on activities outside the U.S. (working with local counsel as necessary) and on managing inbound and outbound flows of funds in a tax-effective manner.
  • Advising foreign organizations on their U.S. tax issues and establishing U.S. “friends of” fundraising organizations.
  • Advising on the laws governing fundraising and charitable solicitation, negotiating commercial sponsorship and product-related fundraising partnerships and helping clients to obtain necessary licenses and permits for their fundraising activities across the U.S.
  • Providing counsel on internal governance matters, including the selection and operation of boards of directors, fiduciary duties, conflicts of interest and liability issues.
  • Counseling charities with respect to planned giving, including gift acceptance policies, due diligence concerns and tax strategies and negotiating large gifts.
  • Establishing charitable remainder trusts, charitable lead trusts and charitable gift annuities.
  • Advising non-profit advocacy groups on the restrictions on lobbying and political activity by tax-exempt organizations.
  • Reviewing executive compensation and other transactions to ensure compliance with IRS and state rules governing excess benefit transactions and private inurement.
  • Representing exempt organizations and related parties in tax disputes and IRS audits or in seeking private letter rulings from the Internal Revenue Service.
  • Approaching legislative or executive branch policymakers about potential legislation or regulations and their impact on non-profit clients

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