Are a nonprofit's finances public information?

Need Professional Help? Talk to a Business Law Attorney.

There was a problem with the submission. Please refresh the page and try again
Full Name is required
Email is required
Please add a valid Email
Phone Number is required
Please add a valid Phone Number
Zip Code is required
Please add a valid Zip Code
Description is required
By clicking "Find a Lawyer", you agree to the Martindale-Nolo Texting Terms. Martindale-Nolo and up to 5 participating attorneys may contact you on the number you provided for marketing purposes, discuss available services, etc. Messages may be sent using pre-recorded messages, auto-dialer or other automated technology. You are not required to provide consent as a condition of service. Attorneys have the option, but are not required, to send text messages to you. You will receive up to 2 messages per week from Martindale-Nolo. Frequency from attorney may vary. Message and data rates may apply. Your number will be held in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

You should not send any sensitive or confidential information through this site. Any information sent through this site does not create an attorney-client relationship and may not be treated as privileged or confidential. The lawyer or law firm you are contacting is not required to, and may choose not to, accept you as a client. The Internet is not necessarily secure and emails sent through this site could be intercepted or read by third parties.

Question

I work for a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation. Are its financial statements available for public viewing -- especially regarding management salaries?

Answer

Indeed. Nonprofits are required to submit their financial statements and other information -- including the salaries of directors, officers, and key employees -- to the IRS. (For information on who is considered a key employee, see IRS Form 990 and its instructions.)

The IRS and nonprofits themselves are required to disclose the information on Form 990 to anyone who asks. Nonprofits must allow public inspection of these records during regular business hours at their principal offices. However, many people won't even need to ask -- a number of websites make Forms 990 available for the searching, including the Foundation Center at http://fdncenter.org and GuideStar at www.guidestar.org.

In addition, people can request information from the IRS by writing a letter, including the name of the organization, the year, and the type of tax return requested, and send it to:

Commissioner of Internal Revenue
Attn: Freedom of Information Reading Room
1111 Constitution Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20224

Learn more about IRS regulations with Nolo's book, Every Nonprofit's Tax Guide.

Get Professional Help
Talk to a Business Law attorney.
There was a problem with the submission. Please refresh the page and try again
Full Name is required
Email is required
Please add a valid Email
Phone Number is required
Please add a valid Phone Number
Zip Code is required
Please add a valid Zip Code
Description is required
By clicking "Find a Lawyer", you agree to the Martindale-Nolo Texting Terms. Martindale-Nolo and up to 5 participating attorneys may contact you on the number you provided for marketing purposes, discuss available services, etc. Messages may be sent using pre-recorded messages, auto-dialer or other automated technology. You are not required to provide consent as a condition of service. Attorneys have the option, but are not required, to send text messages to you. You will receive up to 2 messages per week from Martindale-Nolo. Frequency from attorney may vary. Message and data rates may apply. Your number will be held in accordance with our Privacy Policy.

You should not send any sensitive or confidential information through this site. Any information sent through this site does not create an attorney-client relationship and may not be treated as privileged or confidential. The lawyer or law firm you are contacting is not required to, and may choose not to, accept you as a client. The Internet is not necessarily secure and emails sent through this site could be intercepted or read by third parties.

How It Works

  1. Briefly tell us about your case
  2. Provide your contact information
  3. Choose attorneys to contact you