Country Dance New York is a 501(c)(3) registered as a nonprofit corporation
with the state of NY. We are also registered as a charity, but it looks like
Vermont does not regulate charitable organizations, other than those that
use paid fundraisers. Incorporation has some legal advantages, like to some
extent (and those more knowledgeable can speak up) insulating officers and
board members from individual liability from lawsuits and such - cf.
I expect many states have nonprofit corporation statutes - looks like a lot
of information about Vermont's is at:
It seems like the Secretary of State (or equivalent) is often responsible
for this, but a search for "nonprofit law [state]" should get what people
By the way, are you filing tax returns with the Federal IRS even though you
haven't with the state? I know Jeff Martell at CDSS has been working with
some groups that get their exemption through CDSS but didn't know they had
to file their own Federal tax form (for exempt organizations) as well
(though for very small groups I think a postcard form will do). Several
hundred organizations lost their exemption recently because they had not
filed in 3 years. There is more information at:
and other places.
It is a confusing world, and a lot to know for small organizations like
ours. I don't know if CDSS has yet put together a summary of requirements,
a how-to-do-it for treasurers, etc., or not. They're the natural ones to do
it - although state nonprofit associations are often very helpful:
(but I see Vermont doesn't have
a state association). Ah,well.
On Sat, Sep 3, 2011 at 12:43 PM, Brian Appleberry <brianappleberry(a)yahoo.com
A question for bookkeepers / treasurers:
Are you a nonprofit group registered as such with state, filing the
appropriate regular tax returns with the state?
We (Queen City Contras, in Burlington, Vermont) receive a nice corporate
donation every year, partly because we are a 501c3 with IRS, through CDSS.
But we have not registered with the state.
Here is the problem: Our bank has stopped accepting checks payable to our
dance group, because regulations require that we have a business account,
using a business name that is registered with the state.
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