Home > Legal Issues

The Basics
The Free Management Library has assembled an array of free information about articles of incorporation, by-laws, lobbying regulations and more.
This resource is a go-to place for anyone interested or involved in the nonprofit world who wants to get information about the laws and regulations. It’s divided into three major sections: informational pages about general topics; pages dedicated to an individual jurisdiction; and a section devoted to current issues in NPO regulation and the efforts being made to minimize the regulatory burden that NPOs face.

International Issues

This is a basic list of provisions that should be included in legislation governing not-for-profit organizations (NPOs), provided by the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law. According to the website, “Laws and country reports were collected from more than 100 countries and analyzed to ascertain prevailing international practices. Since that time ICNL has endeavored to improve and increase the information available in its Database and Online Library, which now includes information on more than 150 countries.” 

Lobbying and Political Campaigns

Independent Sector’s comprehensive web page keeps nonprofits up to date on lobbying trends and problems throughout the country. This has webinars, daily news from Washington and a host of other helpful links.

OMB Watch “strives to encourage and expand the rights of nonprofit organizations to engage in public policy advocacy and nonpartisan voter engagement efforts.” The website posts articles regularly on the subject.

Volunteers – the Legal Issues

The subtitle of this manual sums it up nicely: “What to Do Till the Lawyer Comes.” This covers how nonprofits and their volunteers can protect themselves from legal troubles.

Court Cases

This takes you to a database of Supreme Court decisions made since 1893. They’re searchable by year and by U.S. Reports volume number, as well as by citation, case title and full text. FindLaw also maintains an archive of opinion summaries since September 2000.

From the nation’s highest court, this site has links to cases from the court itself, along with those from the federal circuit and state courts.
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