So You Want to Start a Tennessee Non-profit Organization?

To start your nonprofit organization, you will need to decide the purpose of the organization and the incorporators (which can be just you). Articles of Incorporation are the Charter for your group and must be submitted to the Tennessee Secretary of State for approval. You must identify the orgnanization’s agent for service of process who must be located in Tennessee.

You will also need Bylaws drafted which govern how your organization will conduct business, including provisions on the number and duties of the directors, the officers and their respective duties, voting procedures, provisions regarding book keeping, and how funds will be disbursed if the organization is ever dissolved.

A EIN must be obtained from the IRS with Form SS-4. Also, you will need to submit a 501(c) Tax Exempt Application. You also need to submit any required applications for sales and use tax exemptions, and register as a charity with the state.

At the first meeting of the board of directors, the bylaws will be adopted, officers appointed, and initial resolutions passed on opening a bank account. Minutes must be kept.

An annual report must be filed with the Tennessee Secretary of State to keep your orgnanization active.

For more information, give us a call at 901-844-7141.