Legal Guides for Nonprofits

This publication and the chapters above were made possible with grant funding from the Michigan State Bar Foundation. The Foundation’s funding does not constitute an endorsement of content or opinion expressed in it.

  • Vacant Property Toolbox – 2nd Edition
    The Vacant Property Toolbox, 2nd edition provides an overview of both short and long-term strategies that community organizations can apply to reduce the negative impact of vacant properties on neighborhood conditions.



  • Crowdfunding for Nonprofits: Legal Considerations for 501(c)(3) Tax Exempt Organizations
    This guide is intended to provide information for nonprofit/tax exempt or social enterprise organizations interested in crowdfunding. This project was made possible through the generous support of the Michigan State Bar Foundation. A special thank you to our authors: Daimeon Cotton of Cotton Law Center, PLLC; Anthony Frasca of Dykema; and Kate Redman of Olson, Bzdok & Howard.


  • Employment Law Manual – 2nd Edition
    The Second Edition of our Employment Law Manual is a primer on key legal topics facing the nonprofit employer. Every nonprofit employer should understand its legal responsibilities to its employees.Topics covered include: hiring, benefits, employment policies, medical and disability issues, discrimination, termination and more.


  • Fiscal Sponsorship
    A brief article describing how fiscal sponsorship works including the legal responsibilities and duties of a fiscal sponsor as well as the sponsored organization.




  • Tax Considerations for Michigan Nonprofits
    This guide outlines some key state and federal tax compliance requirements that Michigan-based nonprofit organizations should keep in mind. It addresses issues relating to fundraising, operations, and annual filings, such as:

    • Revocation and reinstatement of tax exempt status
    • Rules for charitable giving, including events and cash donations
    • Filing requirements and general guidelines for Form 990
    • Tips on understanding unrelated taxable business income
    • Information reporting requirements, such as Form 1099 and W9s