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I point you out, Mark, because I've read you're a criminal attorney.

I have a question concerning the use of a non-profit 501 (c)(3).

The West Sound Disc Golf Association carries a 501 (c)(3). Our club, the Mason County Disc Golf Club, would like to cooperate with WSDGA somehow to use their non-profit status so that we can give individuals and businesses the ability to "tax-write-off" their donation (for baskets, concrete, locks etc.) The WSDGA view is that this is one of the reasons they went to great lengths to get it's federally recognized non-profit status. The WSDGA is not looking to be compensated, but they are concerned that they may be doing something illegally.

So, my question. Can the WSDGA accept money from/through the MCDGC, and offer a "tax-write-off" receipt for donations to/through MCDGC? Or is this somehow money laundering? What can we do to legally see this through?

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I know that you can work out this kind of arrangement through the Disc Golf Foundation, which is a 501(c)(3), also. It has done it in a number of cases: www.discgolffoundation.net. Since it has the experience and the process already set up, perhaps that would work better?
Thanks for your insight Terry.

I still would like to know if there is a way for WSDGA to extend their 501 (c)(3) to us without any legal repercussions. The answer could help other Clubs in our area, and create a more tight knit community. All parties are interested, but they want to know it's a legal option.
I'll have to look into the Community Foundations thing.

We are a non-profit recognized by the State. That was easy. But obtaining a 501(c)(3) is something we're looking to avoid, because there may be a chance to utilize another Clubs status, and we don't want to use the resource ($) to obtain a 501(c)(3) if we don't have to.
My understanding is that if the donation is not given direct to the 501 (c) (3) there is no option for a "tax write off". 501 (c) (3)'s can not be "shared". We had this issue with the non-profit I worked for. We had groups that wanted to run events and donate the proceeds to us, but also wanted to provide a "receipt" that the customer could use for tax purposes. This was not an option as there could not be a third-party transfer of funds to the non-profit.

I'm not sure where the "line" is if the WSDGA is collecting funds and receipting donors only to give the funds to another group to be used for non-WSDGA purposes. Hopefully someone is specifically familiar with non-profit law as it is an entirely different world and sometimes grey in color... Go figure, law = grey areas!
Well, I am a lawyer but know little about this area (If you happen to get criminally charged in Michigan then I can give much greater help but it may not be worth it just to hear my advice).

The Disc Golf Foundation has done a number of pass-through donations but you need to contact them to find out the specifics and limitations involved. I believe the DGF takes a 5% cut for it's services but then uses the funds to promote the sport through the Matching Baskets College Program, the Steady Ed Museum and other programs. Terry Calhoun, I believe, currently administers the Matching Baskets program and sits on the Board of Directors so he is a good source for information on this topic.

The particular policies and rules of any other Non-profit group is well beyond my knowledge.

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