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Ask Sid

Click Your Way to Nonprofit Status

Q. I’d like to start a nonprofit organization when I retire next year. Where do I begin?

A. There’s plenty of information online to guide your way.

One helpful first step on establishing a nonprofit is to look over the tutorial from the Foundation Center.

You’ll also want to contact your state’s nonprofit association, which likely offers training and other resources. Your state’s chapter also may be able to recommend attorneys who specialize in setting up nonprofit organizations, or you can try local chapters of the American Bar Association.

The IRS provides detailed tax information and answers to frequently asked questions about applying for tax exemptions. For more general information and statistics, check out the National Center for Charitable Statistics.

And for just about everything else, Michigan State University offers a Nonprofit Virtual Library with more than 100 resources on establishing and running a nonprofit group.

Sid Kirchheimer writes about consumer and health issues.

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