Starting a Non-Profit

Step-by-Step – Start-up Tasks

 Drafting a Mission Statement

Mission, vision and values

Resource: What Should Our Mission Statement Say?

Recruiting Board Members

Resource: “Everything you need to know about boards,” from Learning to Give.

  Consulting lawyers, accountants can help you to:

Become a non-profit  corporation, and get tax exempt status, IRS section 501(c)3.

You might want to try to get an attorney and an accountant to be on your board to get help for this free or low cost.

Drafting corporate by-laws:

Resource: Template for nonprofit by-laws:

Once you are incorporated:

  1. Register Your Non-profit with your State ( usually Secretary of State)
  2. Open a bank account, to do this you need to obtain a Federal Employer Number from Internal Revenue Service,,id=98350,00.html
  3.  Obtrain Limiting Liability Insurance and Directors and Board Insurance. Resource: Information from Nonprofit Risk Management Center:

Get an Accountant or Attorney to help you file for IRS Tax Exempt Status. Some states require you that you become a state non-profit organization too, in order to do fund raising.

Resource: Internal Revenue Service Nonprofit  website: 

Resource: IRS pamphlet explaining the process:

 If ( when) You Hire Employees:

Be sure to comply with the State Unemployment and Worker’s Compensation Insurance laws.