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Obtaining 501(c)(3) Status for Your Sports Club

Is your amateur sports club recognized by the IRS as a tax-exempt organization? Is your sports club exempt under §501(c)(4) or §501(c)(7), but you would prefer the favored §501(c)(3) status? Contributions to your club are not deductible when it is exempt either under §501(c)(4) (a 'social action' organization) or §501(c)(7) (a social and recreation club). Plus, a §501(c)(7) club must pay taxes on all investment income, including interest on bank accounts.

However, a §501(c)(3) charity does not pay taxes on its investment income AND contributions to it are deductible, making it more attractive to donors and corporate sponsors. We are privileged to represent many amateur sports clubs throughout the nation. People often ask us whether an amateur sports club can qualify as a §501(c)(3) charity. The answer is 'Yes.'

How does an amateur sports club qualify as a §501(c)(3) charity? There are two ways:

First, a club can qualify if it sponsors or participates in national or international amateur sports competitions, or supports and develops amateur athletes for such competitions. This is possible even if your club has a membership which is strictly local or regional in nature.

Second, a club can qualify if its activities are primarily directed towards youth under the age of 18 and encourages growth of the sport.

Sound interesting? Perhaps your club can qualify. Contact us and we'll be glad to review your current tax-exempt status and your club's operations to see if you might qualify for §501(c)(3) charity status.

If you would like to obtain tax-exempt status or you want us to review your current tax situation, assemble a package of: 1) your Articles of Incorporation; 2) the names and addresses of your officers and board members; 3) a copy of your bylaws or constitution; 4) your federal EIN (employer identification number);` and 5) a recent set of financial statements. We will need additional information later, but this will get us started. We will deal with the IRS and prepare all of the documents necessary to obtain tax-exempt status.

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