These resources are a good place to begin when looking for information about legal and financial compliance issues related to U.S. nonprofits.
The Foundation Center’s GrantSpace website provides an interactive map with links to state resources for nonprofit organizations. Each state page contains start-up guides on how nonprofits can incorporate under state law, links to state agencies, local legal resources, and local management and technical assistance providers.
The National Association of State Charity Officials (NASCO)
NASCO’s resources page offers links to national and state resources for charities, including each state’s charity regulator.
National Council of Nonprofits
The National Council of Nonprofits website includes a tools and resources page with resources for nonprofits produced or curated by the council. Some of these resources help ensure that nonprofits are in compliance with the law, while others present best practices or discussions of relevant issues. Topics include advocacy, boards and governance, employment, ethics and accountability, financial management, fundraising, and leadership.
The Council of Nonprofits website also provides a U.S. map and directory with links to each state’s association of nonprofits, so that users can seek out information on state-specific legal compliance and other resources.
Council on Foundations
While primarily tailored for foundations, the Council on Foundations’ resources page has toolkits and links to information that is useful to many other nonprofits. Information dealing with legal compliance covers such topics as advocacy and lobbying, boards and governance, financial management, ethics and accountability, self-dealing, tax filing, audits, and public disclosure requirements.
501 Commons produces and curates extensive tools and best practices for nonprofit organizations. Resources are divided into topics such as advocacy and community engagement, assessment, boards and governance, communications, financial management, and legal resources. A few resources are specific to Washington State, but most are more generally applicable.
Stanford Law School Organizations and Transactions Clinic
Stanford Law School’s Organizations and Transactions Clinic provides forms and model legal documents for nonprofits. The resources were collected to benefit California nonprofits, but many have more general applicability. They include model legal documents related to corporate governance, volunteers, chapter creation, procurement, and the delivery of certain types of services and programs.