How to Start a Nonprofit in Ohio


Save time & be confident while starting your company. Use best professional help -
#1 TOP PICK
 ZenBusiness - ($0 + State Fees) Online LLC Setup

At LLCBuddy, we don't just offer information; we provide a curated experience backed by extensive research and expertise. Led by Steve Goldstein, a seasoned expert in the LLC formation sector, our platform is built on years of hands-on experience and a deep understanding of the nuances involved in establishing and running an LLC. We've navigated the intricacies of the industry, sifted through the complexities, and packaged our knowledge into a comprehensive, user-friendly guide. Our commitment is to empower you with reliable, up-to-date, and actionable insights, ensuring you make informed decisions. With LLCBuddy, you're not just getting a tutorial; you're gaining a trustworthy partner for your entrepreneurial journey.
Start a Nonprofit in Ohio

Are you looking to start a nonprofit in Ohio? You’ve come to the right place. Known for its vibrant community and rich culture, Ohio (often referred to as The Buckeye State) is an ideal location for establishing a nonprofit organization. Unlike for-profit businesses, nonprofits focus on addressing pressing social issues and require a strong foundation, thorough research, and a clear mission targeting a specific community problem.

Embarking on the journey of creating a nonprofit entails various crucial steps, such as obtaining 501(c)(3) status. A 501(c)(3) organization is designed for charitable, religious, educational purposes, and more, qualifying it for federal and state tax exemptions.

In the spirit of Ohio’s motto, “With God, all things are possible,” thousands of nonprofits are founded within the state each year. This article will provide a comprehensive guide to starting your own nonprofit corporation in Ohio. Keep in mind that the steps discussed here are general guidelines, and modifications may be necessary depending on your specific circumstances. To gain a deep understanding of how to start a nonprofit in Ohio, we encourage you to read this article in its entirety.

What is a Nonprofit in Ohio?

Nonprofit organizations are legal entities that operate to serve public benefits and address community issues. Unlike for-profit organizations, nonprofits do not aim to generate any profit. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) generally exempts nonprofit organizations from tax. However, based on the business entity structure, you will receive tax exemptions as a nonprofit.

In Ohio, ensure you have a community issue to address before you start forming your nonprofit. It can generally be education, religion, charity, social service, or other social issues. Nonprofits do not pay taxes on the money they receive through fundraising programs, donations, or any charitable funding.

Types of Nonprofits in Ohio

The first thing one has to decide is what type of nonprofit structure one wants. There are several types of nonprofits one can start. Here is a list of nonprofit types one can choose from-

  1. Nonprofit LLC
  2. Nonprofit Corporation
  3. Unincorporated Nonprofit

Forming an LLC in Ohio for your nonprofit can be a smooth option. However, having a corporation is less complex than having a nonprofit LLC. Hence, it is wise to start a nonprofit corporation instead of an unincorporated nonprofit or nonprofit LLC.

LLCBuddy Editorial Team.

Technically, starting a corporation for your nonprofit protects your personal assets but also is eligible for Federal and State tax exemptions. When you form an LLC for your nonprofit, it only protects your personal assets but does not give you any tax exemptions. On the other hand, a nonprofit Corporation has both corporation and limited liability company benefits. You can also have an unincorporated structure where you don’t have to register it. Unincorporated nonprofits in Ohio might be eligible for tax exemptions (check with Ohio Department of Taxation), but this type of organization does not get to enjoy limited liability and personal asset protection.

How to Start a Nonprofit Corporation in Ohio

Setting up a nonprofit corporation requires a few things to consider. Name of the nonprofit, initial directors, drafting bylaws, get a Statutory Agent, obtain tax IDs, insurance, and a bank account – these are important steps you must follow. The steps mentioned here are general business formation steps. State-wise, some steps can be different. Getting an expert consultation before you start your nonprofit corporation formation is recommended. Here are the steps explained below-

Step 1: Get a Suitable Name for Your Ohio Nonprofit Corp

The first step is to name your nonprofit corporation. You must be sure that the name is available and that no other organization is using this name. You can check the Ohio LLC name search to find the best suitable name for your organization. You must follow those rules to avoid any legal issues later. You can reserve the name for some time for any domestic entity (such as a nonprofit LLC) if you’re not forming the nonprofit immediately.

Step 2: Appoint the Initial Board of Directors

The next step is to get your nonprofit’s initial board of directors. It is very important when you are setting up a nonprofit corporation. You need at least Three unrelated directors to start the organization. If you don’t choose a minimum of Three directors, it will automatically become a member-managed corporation.

Step 3: Appoint Your Ohio Statutory Agent

The third step is to get a Ohio Statutory Agent for your nonprofit corporation. The Statutory Agent is a person who receives all the legal documents on your behalf. It is necessary to get a registered agent. He/she must be above 18 years old and have a physical address in Ohio.

Step 4: Write Ohio Nonprofit Bylaws

The next important step is to write the company bylaws. The directors and board members must decide how the meetings, elections, voting, and other corporate activities will be held. These bylaws must comply with the Ohio state law. It is similar to an LLC operating agreement in Ohio for the LLC owners.

Step 5: File the Ohio Articles of Incorporation

This is the most important step. File your Articles of Incorporation with the Ohio Secretary of State. You can do it through three methods that are online, by mail and drop box. All the formation forms, such as the Ohio LLC Articles of Organization form, the Ohio Articles of Incorporation form for corporations, forms for LLPs, and all others can be found on the Ohio SOS official website. Submit the details of your nonprofit corporation, like the name of the nonprofit, address, name and address of the registered agent, operation dates, directors’ details, and more information related to your company. You can send the form (for offline filing) and the filing fee of $99 for online and by mail filing to the Ohio Secretary of State, P.O. Box 670, Columbus, OH 43216 or upload it online (if available).

Step 6: Obtain Tax ID for Your Ohio Nonprofit Corporation

The subsequent step involves obtaining a Tax ID for your nonprofit corporation. You will need to acquire an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the official IRS website. To obtain the EIN, submit your application to the IRS office either by mail or through their online platform. There is no associated cost for this process.

Step 7: Get Business Licenses in Ohio

The next step is to get the business licenses you need to run your nonprofit organization in Ohio. Check with the local government office if any special licenses you need to run your nonprofit. You can file your nonprofit as a charity if you want.

Step 8: Federal Tax Exemption

You must submit Form 1023 to the IRS to file for federal tax exemption. This form, titled “Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code,” is required for all nonprofit corporations. Smaller nonprofits have the option to file Form 1023-EZ instead. You will be prompted to provide details about your organization upon obtaining the relevant form. Complete the form with the necessary information and submit it. The filing fees are $600 for Form 1023 and $275 for Form 1023-EZ.

Step 9: State Tax Exemption

Once you get the Federal Tax Exempt, it is time for State Tax Exempt. In Ohio, you must apply for the tax exemption to Ohio Department of Taxation. Get the form, fill it up with the correct details, and send it to the office. You may need to pay a fee along with the form and supportive documents to apply for the State Tax Exemption. You need Tax Unit Exemption Certificate to apply for the state tax exemption. Read Ohio classification of taxes to learn more about the Ohio tax structure.

Step 10: Get Insurance for Your Ohio Nonprofit

Once you start your nonprofit, you must get insurance to protect your organization. You must get workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance if you have employees. Based on your nonprofit structure, you might need general liability insurance, property, vehicle, auto insurance, etc. You can contact the insurance providers to learn more about which are required for your organization. Also, you can contact Ohio Department of Insurance for more information.

After Forming Your Ohio Nonprofit Corporation

Once your nonprofit is formed, there are additional steps to complete:

  • Get a Business Bank Account: You must get a business account for all types of business-related transactions in Ohio. You may need different documents based on the bank and place of business. Check with the bank for it.
  • File Nonprofit as Charity: This is optional. Your nonprofit is either for charity purposes or any purpose that meets your community’s needs. If your organization is for charity purposes, then you can file your nonprofit as a charity to enjoy tax exemptions.
  • Other Business Compliances: You may need additional compliances based on your nonprofit type. Check with your attorney or local authority for more information.

Names of Nonprofit Corporations in Ohio

Following are some of the Nonprofit Organizations in Ohio. The contact information of these organizations can be found on Ohio SOS official websites.

  • Crayons to Classrooms
  • Heartbeat International
  • Inc.
  • Mission4Maureen
  • First Glance Student Center
  • Inc.
  • 4 Paws For Ability Inc.
  • Truth For Life with Alistair Begg
  • Sanctuary for Senior Dogs
  • Cozy Cat Cottage. Powell
  • OH.

FAQs

What are the requirements for starting a nonprofit in Ohio?
In order to start a nonprofit organization in Ohio, you must register with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office, file Articles of Incorporation with the state, and obtain a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS. You will also need to create bylaws for the organization, create a board of directors, and create a charitable solicitation registration statement, if applicable.
What is the difference between Ohio nonprofits and for-profit organizations?
Nonprofits in Ohio are organizations whose primary purpose is charitable, educational, scientific, or religious, and they are not organized to make a profit. For-profit organizations are typically businesses that are organized to make a profit for their owners and shareholders.
What is the process for registering a nonprofit in Ohio?
The registration process for a nonprofit in Ohio includes filing Articles of Incorporation with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office, obtaining a federal Employer Identification Number from the IRS, and, if applicable, filing a charitable solicitation registration statement.
What information is needed to register a nonprofit in Ohio?
When registering a nonprofit in Ohio, you will need to provide the Ohio Secretary of State’s office with your Articles of Incorporation, including the name of your organization, the purpose, the address, the names of the board of directors, and the registered agent. You will also need to provide the IRS with your federal Employer Identification Number, and, if applicable, provide the state with a charitable solicitation registration statement.
What are the filing fees associated with registering a nonprofit in Ohio?
The filing fee to register a nonprofit in Ohio is $99.
What are the Ohio laws related to nonprofits?
Ohio has various laws related to nonprofits, including the Ohio Nonprofit Corporation Law, the Ohio Charitable Organizations Act, and the Ohio Unfair Sales Act. These laws govern the formation, operation, and dissolution of nonprofits in Ohio.
What are the reporting requirements for nonprofits in Ohio?
Nonprofits in Ohio are required to file an annual report with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office and an annual tax return with the IRS. In addition, certain nonprofits may be required to register with the Ohio Attorney General’s office if they are engaging in charitable solicitations.
How do I obtain a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) for a nonprofit in Ohio?
You can obtain a federal EIN for a nonprofit in Ohio by applying online through the IRS website or by submitting Form SS-4 to the IRS.
What are the benefits of forming a nonprofit in Ohio?
Forming a nonprofit in Ohio offers several benefits, including limited liability protection to the directors and officers; access to grants and other forms of charitable funding; tax-exempt status; and the ability to accept tax-deductible donations.
What are the steps for starting a nonprofit in Ohio?
The steps for starting a nonprofit in Ohio include researching the organization’s purpose and mission, creating a business plan, forming a board of directors, creating the organization’s articles of incorporation, filing the articles of incorporation with the Ohio Secretary of State, obtaining an Employer Identification Number, registering with the Ohio Department of Taxation, and applying for tax-exempt status with the IRS.
Are there any laws specific to Ohio I should be aware of?
Yes, there are a few Ohio laws that nonprofit organizations must be aware of. These include the Ohio Charitable Trust Act, the Ohio Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act, and the Ohio Nonprofit Corporation Law.
How do I obtain 501(c)(3) status in Ohio?
To obtain 501(c)(3) status in Ohio, you will need to file Form 1023 or Form 1023-EZ with the IRS. You will also need to file an Ohio Certificate of Authority with the Ohio Secretary of State.
What are the filing fees for starting a nonprofit in Ohio?
The filing fees for starting a nonprofit in Ohio vary depending on the type of organization. The filing fee for a nonprofit corporation is $99. For a charitable trust, the filing fee is $35.
What is the Ohio Charitable Trust Act?
The Ohio Charitable Trust Act is a law that requires nonprofits to register with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and is designed to protect the public from fraud and abuse. The act also requires nonprofits to report annually to the Attorney General’s Office.
What is the Ohio Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act?
The Ohio Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act is a law that regulates charities and fundraising activities in Ohio. The act requires nonprofits to register with the Ohio Attorney General’s Office and report all fundraising activities and income.
How do I register with the Ohio Secretary of State?
To register with the Ohio Secretary of State, you must file the Articles of Incorporation with the Secretary of State’s office. You can do this online or by mail.
What is the Ohio Nonprofit Corporation Law?
The Ohio Nonprofit Corporation Law is a law that governs the formation and operation of nonprofit corporations in Ohio. The law requires nonprofits to register with the Ohio Secretary of State and obtain an Employer Identification Number.
Do I need to register with the Ohio Department of Taxation?
Yes, it is important to register with the Ohio Department of Taxation to ensure that the nonprofit is in compliance with state tax laws. The nonprofit must also apply for tax-exempt status with the IRS.
How do I apply for tax-exempt status in Ohio?
To apply for tax-exempt status in Ohio, you must file Form 1023 or Form 1023-EZ with the IRS. You must also register with the Ohio Department of Taxation and obtain an Employer Identification Number.
How do I start a nonprofit in Ohio?
To start a nonprofit in Ohio, you need to form the business entity, obtain tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service, and register with the Ohio Secretary of State.
What kind of paperwork is required to start a nonprofit in Ohio?
The paperwork necessary to start a nonprofit in Ohio includes articles of incorporation, bylaws, and a tax-exempt application.
What is the first step for starting a nonprofit in Ohio?
The first step in starting a nonprofit in Ohio is forming the business entity, which is done by filing articles of incorporation with the Ohio Secretary of State.
What are the advantages of forming a nonprofit in Ohio?
The advantages of forming a nonprofit in Ohio include the ability to receive tax-exempt status from the IRS, receive donations from individuals and organizations, and be exempt from certain fees and taxes.
What taxes do nonprofits in Ohio have to pay?
Nonprofits in Ohio are exempt from most state and local taxes, but may be required to pay federal taxes such as income and employment taxes.
What is the difference between a nonprofit and a for-profit in Ohio?
The main difference between a nonprofit and a for-profit in Ohio is that a nonprofit is organized for a charitable purpose, while a for-profit is organized to make money.
What are the governance requirements for nonprofits in Ohio?
Nonprofits in Ohio must have a board of directors, have written bylaws that outline their operations, and have an annual meeting of members.
What is the filing fee for starting a nonprofit in Ohio?
The filing fee for starting a nonprofit in Ohio is $99.
Are there any special requirements for nonprofits in Ohio?
Nonprofits in Ohio must register with the Ohio Secretary of State and obtain tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service.
Do I need a lawyer to start a nonprofit in Ohio?
While it is not required, it is recommended that you seek legal counsel when starting a nonprofit in Ohio.
What is the deadline for filing paperwork for a nonprofit in Ohio?
The deadline for filing paperwork for a nonprofit in Ohio is within 45 days of forming the business entity.
Can a nonprofit in Ohio have employees?
Yes, a nonprofit in Ohio can have employees, as long as they comply with state and federal employment laws.
Is it difficult to start a nonprofit in Ohio?
Starting a nonprofit in Ohio is not difficult, but it does require paperwork and understanding of the process.

Also Read

Why Ohio Nonprofit Corporation is So Important

One of the primary reasons why Ohio Nonprofit Corporations are so important is their focus on public welfare. These organizations actively work towards improving the well-being and quality of life for citizens across the state. Whether it’s tackling homelessness, advocating for education reform, promoting healthcare access, protecting the environment, or supporting the arts, Nonprofit Corporations in Ohio are continually striving to create a better tomorrow for everyone. With their distinct missions and goals, they play an irreplaceable role in helping needy communities and individuals, often efficiently utilizing resources and leveraging volunteers.

The innovative spirit of Ohio Nonprofit Corporations is another noteworthy aspect that highlights their importance. Nonprofits have been historically known for their ability to foster and promote social innovation. These organizations constantly experiment with new ideas and approaches, seeking sustainable solutions to address root causes rather than just treating symptoms. Their agility and adaptability allow them to respond swiftly and effectively to emerging challenges, acting as laboratories for social change and inspiring innovation in broader society.

Moreover, Ohio Nonprofit Corporations are instrumental in fostering a sense of engagement and social transformation among individuals. By volunteering or working with such organizations, people can not only make a tangible impact on society but also personally grow and develop as responsible citizens. These nonprofits serve as essential platforms for civic participation, empowering individuals to take an active role in making their community a better place to live. They provide spaces for mutual collaboration and unite people from diverse backgrounds towards a shared vision, bridging divides and encouraging social solidarity.

Nonprofit Corporations in Ohio work closely with stakeholders at all levels, promoting collaboration and partnerships to maximize their impact. They often foster multidisciplinary alliances, bringing together individuals, businesses, governments, and academic institutions to address complex social challenges holistically. These collaborations ensure that multiple perspectives are considered, and a comprehensive approach is taken towards social change. By actively engaging diverse stakeholders, Ohio Nonprofit Corporations facilitate dialogue, break down barriers, and build bridges towards building a society that is stronger and more resilient.

Finally, Ohio Nonprofit Corporations act as an essential pillar of democracy itself. They play a vital role in advocating for the rights and needs of communities, empowering marginalized voices, and fighting for justice and equality. Through their advocacy and campaigns, they raise awareness and influence public policy. In this way, they help maintain a democratic fabric by holding institutions accountable and ensuring the involvement of citizens in shaping the decisions that affect their lives.

In sum, Ohio Nonprofit Corporations are indispensable actors dedicated to making a tangible and positive impact in our society. With a focus on public welfare, innovative thinking, civic engagement, collaboration, and advocacy, these organizations shape a sustainable and inclusive future. Their work needs to be supported and recognized, and their importance understood by all who value the well-being and progress of communities across Ohio.

Conclusion

Starting a nonprofit corporation in Ohio is an incredible way to give back to your community and positively impact the causes that matter most to you. By forming a nonprofit, you can provide essential services, promote awareness, and make a lasting difference in the lives of those who need it most. In Ohio, a lot of nonprofit organizations are there to cater to people in need. Starting a nonprofit corporation is better than an LLC, as it provides limited liability and tax benefits. It helps you save taxes. If you want to start a nonprofit in Ohio, you must follow the steps mentioned above in the article.


About Author & Editorial Staff

Steve Goldstein, founder of LLCBuddy, is a specialist in corporate formations, dedicated to guiding entrepreneurs and small business owners through the LLC process. LLCBuddy provides a wealth of streamlined resources such as guides, articles, and FAQs, making LLC establishment seamless. The diligent editorial staff makes sure content is accurate, up-to-date information on topics like state-specific requirements, registered agents, and compliance. Steve's enthusiasm for entrepreneurship makes LLCBuddy an essential and trustworthy resource for launching and running an LLC.

Leave a Comment