In the News

Copyright 2022
Not-for-profit organizations often struggle with valuing non-cash and in-kind donations, including the value of houses and other real estate. Whether for recordkeeping purposes or when helping donors understand proper valuation for their charitable tax deductions, the task isn't easy. Although the amount that a donor can deduct generally is based on the donation's fair market value (FMV), there's no single formula for calculating FMV for every type of gift. Note: A donor can't claim a tax deduction for the contribution of services. Thus, this article focuses on valuing gifts of property for tax purposes rather than financial accounting purposes.
Copyright 2022
Does your organization have a succession plan in place? And, if it does, is it well documented? Some not-for-profits delay detailed succession planning, thinking of it as a project they'll get to "someday." But that's a mistake. Like making future plans in your private life, creating a succession plan for your organization is a necessity. And the earlier you start planning, the better. You'll come across information that needs to be documented for the successor — and you might also spot some issues that need to be cleared up before the transition.
Copyright 2022
If your not-for-profit organization expects its board members to play a fundraising role, you probably already know how difficult it can be to motivate them. They're busy people, and even when they have excellent connections, they're not always comfortable asking those in their network for money — however noble the cause. Fortunately, there are ways you can help board members overcome their reservations.
Copyright 2022
So you think investment policies are only for not-for-profits with millions to invest? Not true. If your organization holds funds in reserve — for example, to cover emergencies or meet long-term goals — it's prudent to have investment policies. Such policies will help ensure that you manage reserve funds responsibly according to their purpose and take steps to minimize investment risk.
Copyright 2022
Let's say an established not-for-profit organization provides medical services to low-income families. The organization is approached by a group that wants to serve the same population with periodic reduced-cost dental clinics, and it has already lined up several large donations. The fledgling group, however, doesn't have 501(c)(3) status and wants the established organization to act as its fiscal sponsor.
Copyright 2022
With salaries on a plateau or rising only slightly at most not-for-profit organizations, employers should be alert to other ways to give their employees a financial break. Having an accountable plan for business expense reimbursement is one way to save your employees some money.
Copyright 2022
The IRS has repeatedly put employers on notice: It's cracking down on organizations that improperly classify workers as independent contractors instead of employees. Are you confident that your employee classifications would stand up to IRS scrutiny?
Copyright 2022
Maintaining detailed time records for staff may not be your favorite task. Unfortunately, it's not negotiable. Timekeeping — for volunteers and individuals paid for their work — is necessary for most not-for-profit organizations. However, there are ways to make the job less onerous.
Copyright 2022
Q. Our organization is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization that relies on volunteers. Sometimes our volunteers incur significant transportation and other expenses in connection with the performance of their volunteer services. We would like to pay for some of those expenses, either directly or by reimbursement, to relieve their financial burden. If we do, would the expense payments be treated as taxable income, or would the payments be excluded from income — as they are when our employees incur similar expenses?
Copyright 2022
Each year, your non-for-profit organization must carefully determine the proper Form 990 return to file because penalties can be assessed for failing to file the right version. If a form is materially incomplete or the wrong return is filed, the IRS will return Form 990 series forms filed on paper — and reject electronically filed returns. When preparing and reviewing 990 returns, it's important to check for common filing errors (as reported by the IRS) before submitting them.

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