Today TaxMama hears from Chad in Aukland, NZ, “I’m trying to organize the purchase of a “vintage” America’s Cup sailing boat to participate in some regattas in the Bay Area. I would be the skipper, acting on behalf of the owner. He wants to be able to write off a large portion of the expense. I’ve been told that a 501c3 organization may work for us. We will be spending $250,000 on the boat, with an annual operating cost of $170,000. This is mostly for equipment, pro salaries, flights, hotels, parking, etc. Can you educate me about our options.”
That sounds like a wonderful opportunity – what a great idea!
Setting up an US non-profit enterprise, it would be necessary to do some research to ensure the venture is tax deductible as a qualifying charity. I am sure there are legal ways to make this work for you.
Start your reading here, in TaxMama’s Resources section. I’ve put up links to information about non-profit organizations. There’s even a link to a site that provides all the forms and explains how to fill them in. http://taxmama.wpengine.com/resources/npo.html
But, if I were wealthy enough to sink nearly half a million dollars into this venture, I certainly wouldn’t be letting an amateur fumble about, setting up my non-profit organization. There’s too much risk of doing it improperly and losing the charitable contribution deduction. I’d turn this over to the professionals – here are a couple of good options, if you don’t know anyone who can help – http://eoag.com in Los Angeles.
Also, Sandy Deja, who maintains the step-by-step do-it-yourself site is available to review the application, or to file it for you. http://form1023help.com/_wsn/page17.html
Though, personally, I’d look to someone locally who can be with you through the long term. If you have a good, local tax professional, who’s expert in non-profits, it will help you in the long run. You’ll also have the credibility to raise money from other sponsors in case this benefactor ever loses interest.
And, remember, you’ll find answers about lots of information about non-profits and other tax issues, free. Where? Where else? At TaxMama.com
- Ask TaxMama :: Where taxes are fun and answers are free
- TaxMama’s Resources :: Non-Profit Information
- Exempt Organization Advisory Group :: in Los Angeles
- 1023Help.com :: Sandy Deja, EA in Alaska