State Registration Requirements for Nonprofit Fundraising

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Question: Fundraising in all 50 states via (1) the Internet and (2) mailed solicitations. What do we need to know? Do we need solicitation permits in each state? What are the current laws regarding this type of fundraising?

Currently 40 states in the United States require charitable organizations to register when engaged in solicitations within the state. Charitable solicitations are broadly defined, to include almost all methods of oral, written, or online requests for contributions. The entity does not have to be physically present in a state to be soliciting (e.g., sending a letter or e-mail into the state is usually enough).

Originally published in GuideStar, January 2014.

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