Resources

This directory offers a starting point for individuals seeking assistance in establishing, operating and managing nonprofit charitable organizations. This is an informational resource only, which provides contact information for government agencies, low-cost legal services and technical assistance. Listing here is not an endorsement of the organization or its web content.

Government

Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
(877) 829-5500
irs.gov

Oversees federal tax-exempt status of charitable organizations and provides a range of resources to assist charities, private foundations and other nonprofit organizations with federal reporting compliance.

California Franchise Tax Board (FTB)
(916) 845-4171
ftb.ca.gov

Oversees state tax-exempt status of charitable organizations in California and compliance with state tax reporting requirements.

California Secretary of State
(916) 653-8814
sos.ca.gov
Name Availability Unit
(916) 657-5448

Charities seeking to operate in California must file articles of incorporation with the Secretary of State and a current list of board officers.

Recorded information on how to obtain a name for nonprofit corporations.

California Attorney General
(916) 210-6276 or 1-800-952-5225
oag.ca.gov/charities

Registry of Charitable Trusts
P.O. Box 903447
Sacramento, CA 94203-4470

Charitable Trusts Section - Los Angeles
300 South Spring Street, Room 1702
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Charitable Trusts Section - San Francisco
455 Golden Gate Ave., Suite 11000
San Francisco, CA 94102-7004

Charities operating in California must register and file annual financial reports with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts. The Attorney General's Charities website offers resources to help charities with registration and reporting compliance. Compliance and enforcement are handled by the Attorney General's Charitable Trusts Section.

Local Governments
www.ceb.com

Essential for both attorneys and nonprofits, this is the only law and practice book on forming, operating, and maintaining California nonprofit corporations. Charities should check on local requirements that may require charities and charitable fundraisers to register, certify their tax-exempt status, obtain a license to solicit and file accountings of fundraising proceeds. Compiled by the Continuing Education of the Bar, it is a 2-volume publication, Advising California Nonprofit Corporations.

California Board of Equalization
(800) 400-7115
boe.ca.gov

Administers state tax assessment policies in four general areas: sales and use taxes, property taxes, special taxes and the tax appellate program.

California Employment Development Department
(888) 745-3886
edd.ca.gov

Provides labor market data for the state and by county.

Federal Trade Commission
ftc.gov

Information for donors about charities.

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Charitable Solicitation & Fundraising

BBB Wise Giving Alliance
The Council of Better Business Bureaus
4200 Wilson Blvd., Suite 800
Arlington, VA 22203-1804
(800) 575-GIVE
www.give.org

Information for donors about charities.

American Institute of Philanthropy
3450 North Lake Shore Dr., Suite 2802E
P.O. Box 578460
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 529-2300
charitywatch.org

Information for donors about charities.

GuideStar
www2.guidestar.org

Provides searchable database of charities nationwide and information for donors about charitable organizations.

Charity Navigator
charitynavigator.org

Information for donors about charities.

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