IRS

Question

[This question about Friends of the Library and $$$ is from a municipal public library]

We have a newly re-organized Friends group that does not have 501(c)(3) status but would like to accept donations. I know that the library can act as a pass-through for grants but I was wondering if this also applies to undesignated monetary donations?

Answer

This issue—the question of a public library acting as a pass-through on an ongoing and open-ended basis for its Friends—is like a mouse seeking cheddar[1] cheese in a maze.


Question

I work at a special district public library, and we are not currently a 501(c)(3). Everyone I've asked from co-workers to administration to board members says no, we aren't eligible, but no one can answer *why* we wouldn't be eligible. First, we pretty explicitly meet the exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3).

Answer

In Greek mythology, the "chimera" is an intact, functioning animal boasting the features of other animals: the head of a lion, the body of a goat, and the tail of a serpent (or a dragon, depending on your source).

Libraries are legal chimeras.


Question

Our museum has an item on long-term loan that is potentially pretty valuable--a 200-yr old document.

We no longer wish to have this item in our custody unless it is gifted to us outright, and no longer on loan.

Answer

This question had me on the edge of my seat until the very end.

          WHAT is this 200-year-old document?

          WHO is this mysterious lender?

          WHAT does the original loan agreement look like?

          WHO took the 20-year-old photos?


Question

Are incorporated "Friends", who do not receive over $50 thousand, do not have paid staff, and are only able to provide the funds to the library, required to register [with the New York Attorney General] and submit the CHAR500 form?

Answer

When one considers becoming a "Friend" of a library, several activities spring to mind:


Question

I need clarification about the IRS regulations on 501c3 organizations.

Answer

This answer comes with many disclaimers, because the legal parameters of room access and rental at chartered libraries in New York is variable territory.  In other words: the answer can depend on the library’s “type” (set by its charter), its fundamental rules (found in the bylaws), its IRS status (the “501 (c)(3) mentioned by the member”), its day-to-day rules (controlled by policies), its lea