Nonprofit organizations are one of the best ways to make impactful differences in communities. These organizations provide bigger platforms with wider reach to promote different advocacies and the spirit of giving.
Whether you’re passionate about helping a cause or want to give back to your community, it gives you the perfect outlet to use your talents for the good of humanity.
Starting a nonprofit in Wyoming can be fulfilling, but it can also be challenging. There are a lot of legal requirements you need to keep in mind, which makes it difficult to know where to start.
If you need help creating your own social enterprise, you’ve come to the right place. This blog will discuss how to become a registered nonprofit organization in Wyoming.
How to Register A Nonprofit Organization in Wyoming
Name Your nonprofit
The first thing you need to do to start your nonprofit is to find a name for it. In Wyoming, organizations can’t share the same name. If another business already uses or has trademarked your proposed name, you can’t use it for your organization anymore.
So before you settle on a name, you need to check the Filing Search database of the Secretary of the State’s website to see if it’s still available for use. If it is, you can reserve it for 120 days while you file your documents to the Secretary of State.
To make a name reservation, you must submit an application for Reservation of Corporate Name to the SOS and pay a $50 filing fee.
Remember that once your reservation is over, you can’t renew it anymore. Once you get a name reservation, we recommend registering your nonprofit organization before the 120 days are over.
Recruit Board Members
Nonprofits in Wyoming should have an incorporator, a board of directors, and officers.
Incorporators are the people responsible for signing the Articles of Organization of your nonprofit. Meanwhile, your board of directors is responsible for overseeing the organization.
Now, Wyoming requires nonprofits to have at least three directors. Directors don’t have residency requirements, so they’re not required to live in Wyoming to become a director. You can appoint anyone so long as they have a default term of 1 year.
The state also requires nonprofits to have three officers; a president, a secretary, and a treasurer. Fortunately, one person can hold all three offices, which means you only need a couple of people to complete your board members.
Find A Registered Agent
Wyoming requires all organizations, nonprofit or not, to have a registered agent. They’re responsible for receiving your organization’s legal documents and helping you maintain excellent service of process.
Since your registered agent will be the state’s point of contact with your nonprofit, they must be a Wyoming resident. If you don’t have an employee living within the state, we recommend hiring one from a registered agent service provider.
Once you assign a registered agent, you must submit a Consent to Appointment by Registered Agent application alongside your Articles of Incorporation.
File Your Articles of Incorporation
Your nonprofit Articles of Incorporation include all the important information about its creation. Typically, this document should have the following:
The name of your organization
A statement confirming whether it’s a public benefit corporation, religious corporation, or mutual benefit corporation
The name and address of the official registered agent
The names and addresses of all incorporators
The names and addresses of all members
A dissolution of assets provisions
How much does it cost to register a nonprofit organization in Wyoming? It will only set you back $25 to file your Articles of Incorporation with the Secretary of State.
All business entities, including nonprofits, need an EIN from the IRS. It’s a unique nine-digit code they assign to every entity in the state.
Even if your nonprofit doesn’t plan on hiring employees, it still needs an EIN. You’ll need one to open a bank account in Wyoming and if you want to apply for tax-exempt status.
Apply For Federal Tax Exemption
Federal tax exemptions have plenty of benefits for nonprofits. This includes limited liability, tax-deductible donations, and discounts for the US postal services.
If you want your nonprofit to have tax-exempt status, you need to apply for a 501(c)(3) exemption.
You must submit three things for your application; Articles of Incorporation, EIN, and 1023 form. Before you submit your formation articles, you need to include three things in the document:
A statement of purpose based on the IRS requirements
A statement ensuring that your nonprofit won’t engage in prohibited political activities
A dissolution of assets provision saying you’ll donate your assets to another 501(c)(3) organization upon dissolution.
Once you’ve updated your documents, complete your 1023 or 1023-EZ form. When you submit your form, you’ll have to pay an IRS fee ranging from $275 to $600, depending on the form you submit.
In some cases, nonprofits would use Form 1023-EZ, designed for smaller organizations. This form is easier to use than the other one but is also more expensive to file.
If your application is approved, the IRS will send you a determination letter saying that your nonprofit is now tax-exempt. Nonprofits with this status are also exempted from paying state taxes.
However, you still have to apply for sales and use tax exemption with the Wyoming Department of Revenue.
Open A Bank Account
The last thing you need to do for your nonprofit organization is to open a local bank account. Doing so will help keep your personal assets separate from your nonprofit’s.
Once you find a local Wyoming bank that fits your needs, all you need to provide is your EIN, your Articles of Incorporation, and your bylaws.
Start Changing Lives Today
Creating your own nonprofit is one of the best ways to leave a significant impact on your community. Though the process seems challenging, you don’t have to do it alone. NCH is here to help you out.
NCH is one of Nevada’s leading business formation services providers. Our business specialists have helped countless philanthropists in their quest to start a social enterprise.
With our help, becoming a registered nonprofit organization in Wyoming will be a breeze. Find out how we can help your nonprofit succeed by visiting our website here.
DISCLAIMER: The above material has been prepared for informational purposes only, containing opinions of the provider, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Please consider consulting tax, legal, and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.