Unincorporated Nonprofit Organization FAQs
See: Business Services, Business Registrations, FAQs (generally applicable to all business entities)
See: Business Registrations, Trade Name, FAQs
How do I obtain a certificate of good standing or a certificate of fact?
The Secretary of State provides certificates of good standing on corporations and limited liability companies. The Secretary of State can only issue a certificate of fact that an unincorporated nonprofit organization has a trade name registered with the Secretary of State. The certificate cannot make reference to "good standing" or verify existence of the entity. The certificate is available with payment by check, money order, credit card (VISA, MasterCard, or Discover), or pre-authorized credit. The request can be made by:
- Calling 701-328-4284 or 800-352-0867 (Ext. 8-4284)
- Fax at 701-328-2992 addressed to the Business Division
- Email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mail addressed to: Business Division
Secretary of State
600 E Boulevard Ave Dept 108
Bismarck ND 58505-0500
How can I obtain the names and addresses of officers of an unincorporated nonprofit organization?
Since the officers of an unincorporated nonprofit organization are not filed with the Secretary of State, the information must be obtained from the organization.
Should we incorporate our nonprofit organization?
Individuals must research this question on their own and should consult an attorney and/or tax professional in making the decision. There are many factors to consider including but not limited to:
- Tax issues;
- Liability issues;
- Access to public or private grant money;
- Donations with tax-deductible status; and
- Special postage rates.
If a decision is made to incorporate, contact the Secretary of State for forms and procedural information.
Since our unincorporated organization pursues a charitable mission, do we automatically have tax-exempt status? No. A nonprofit organization must apply to the Internal Revenue Service for tax-exempt status. See Internal Revenue website at http://www.irs.ustreas.gov/charities/index.html