Louis E. Michelson, A Professional Corporation

Providing Legal and Tax Advisory Services to Nonprofit Organizations

New Useful Resource: Form 990 Policy Series Memoranda Now Available Online

May 17th, 2011 · No Comments · Federal Income Taxes, Form 990, Governance

The Form 990 Policy Series Memoranda, developed to respond to governance questions in the new Form 990, are now available online!  They can be accessed, without charge, at the web site of Public Counsel, the nation’s largest pro bono law firm.  See http://www.publiccounsel.org/useful_materials?id=0025 or go to publiccounsel.org, click on Practice Areas, then Community Development, then Useful Materials and then Form 990 Policy Series.

The newly redesigned Internal Revenue Service Form 990, informational return for tax-exempt organizations, asks filers about the governance policies and procedures they have in place.  In order to address the governance issues in the Form 990, in March 2009, a group of lawyers, all members of the California bar and practicing nonprofit law (the Form 990 Policy Series Group), was formed.

The resulting Form 990 Policy Series Memoranda include form policies, with a discussion of why various provisions might be used by a particular type or size of organization. Equally importantly, the Memoranda include rationales for adoption of the policies, including references to applicable statutes and regulations, and procedures for legal counsel to use in advising their clients on drafting and adopting such policies.

The Form 990 Policy Series Memoranda available on the above website are those regarding:  Compensation; Conflict of Interest; Conservation Easements; Document Retention and Destruction; Form 990 Review; Fundraising; Mission Statement; and Whistleblower.  The Memoranda themselves, including policies, are posted in a pdf format, and the applicable policies are also posted in Word format.

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