Start a 501(c)(3) or Other Nonprofit

When it comes to starting a nonprofit organization, The Foundation Group is the professional resource America turns to the most!  Whether you are starting a charity, foundation, church, school, or any other nonprofit organization, our full-service solution makes it simple for you to get there.  How?

  • Over 14,000 nonprofit organizations started
  • Expert counsel, not just document prep
  • A genuine 100% IRS approval rate
  • We guarantee your approval!
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video playerStarting a Nonprofit – The Webinar

This free, informative presentation will take you step by step through the process of starting a nonprofit organization.  Learn as we explain the fundamentals of formation, plus the challenges…and the rewards…of launching a new charitable venture.

You will also discover why Foundation Group is the perfect partner to help you make it happen!

Get Instant Access!

Words cannot express our profound appreciation for all your hard work on our behalf.  We would not have gotten our IRS approval without your great work.  You are truly Noah’s Ark & Company’s HERO!”


Corazon Ketchem, Executive Director
Noah’s Ark & Company

Free Download:  10 Questions You Must Consider Before Starting a Nonprofit

You want to start a nonprofit. Great!

But what does it really take to start a nonprofit?  What are the non-negotiables that simply must be in place in order to get started with any hope for success?  What steps are required to make sure the organization you are starting can work in tight economic conditions?

Download our free guidebook and learn the questions you should be asking before you get started on your adventure.

Click to download!

Essential Compliance Services

Your compliance filings cannot be an afterthought.  Staying on top of state and federal requirements is essential to long-term organizational success.  Our Compliance Team works with hundreds of nonprofits each year, assisting them with things such as:

Trust our experts to keep your nonprofit running smoothly!

Foundation Group – Empowering Nonprofits Since 1995

The Foundation Group is America’s #1 provider of formation services to new nonprofits.  With over 13,000 clients served, no one has more experience.

And formation is just the beginning…Our compliance department ensures that our clients stay on the right side of state and federal regulations.

Let Foundation Group empower your nonprofit!

More about FG

The Foundation Group team was thrilled and surprised when a box of t-shirts and hoodies showed up at our door, bearing the logo of one of our inspiring clients, The Niki Feezle CF Explosion of Hope Foundation.  It is such an honor to serve great organizations like these!

Some of our team showing off their Niki Feezle Foundation wear!

Nonprofit Mini-FAQ

What is a 501(c)(3)?

First of all, it’s not a 5013c or a 503c or any of the hosts of other mistaken identities that it gets called. A 501(c)(3) organization is simply a nonprofit organization (usually incorporated) that has applied for and obtained recognition of tax exemption by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Go here for a more in-depth look at this question…

What types of organizations qualify?

In order for the IRS to recognize an organization as being qualified for 501(c)(3) status, it must satisfy the IRS’s general definition of being organized for charitable purposes. “Charity” is broadly defined to include the following organizational purposes: religious, educational, charitable (benevolence), scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering of national or international amateur sports, or prevention of cruelty to animals and children.

How do you start a 501(c)(3) or other nonprofit organization?

Answering that question is what we are about. Check out our nonprofit organization startup page for more details…or just give us a call on our toll-free number at the top of the page.

 Need More Answers?

Check out our FAQ page for more detailed answers to these and other important questions.


Client Feedback...

Dealing with the IRS is the last thing a motivated foundation like Back to Wild wants to spend its time and energy on. Thanks to Foundation Group, we have our 501(c)(3) status fast and question free from the IRS. (You) were very professional and knew exactly what we did not…so indeed, a great partner for any new nonprofit.

– John Dodson, Back to Wild Foundation -

I was amazed and jubilant when I opened our IRS approval letter. The high quality of The Foundation Group’s work can be seen in the fact that it took only 15 days from the time of submission to approval by the IRS. Your error-free attention to details helped smooth the way. I heartily recommend The Foundation Group to anyone seeking assistance in the 501(c)(3) process.

– Rev. David Cole, Golden Gate Senior Fellowship

If you are blessed and fortunate enough to find this web site, I suggest you go another step further. The Foundation Group has proven their capabilities continuously. I am just another example of that. God bless and take that next step with the Foundation Group!

– David L. Thomas, Light Bearer's, Inc.

Thank you for all your help. I really appreciate your knowledge, customer service and attitude. More companies should use your model of ensuring their customers’ success.

– Ferman Ansel, Arabian Horse Legacy Foundation -

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you…can’t say it enough. You don’t know what this will mean to all the children and their families that we will serve!!!

– Vicky Morris, Lil Bit O' Heaven Foundation -

Absolutely quote me…The board of directors is astounded, as is our CPA. I mark it up to you knowing your business and making sure that all requirements are met. You are wonderful to work with, insightful, put into the “right words” our intent…THANK YOU so much from the entire Board of Directors.

– Lee Denlinger, Int'l Fellowship of Rotarian Musicians -

Today is a true red letter day around here!  We have just received our Determination Letter from the IRS recognizing the Foundation to Illuminate America’s Heroes as a public charity under the Code!  We are ecstatic and grateful to you and to your wonderful organization for all of your expertise.  You may be sure that we will be recommending the Foundation Group!

– David Jamison, President, Foundation to Illuminate America's Heroes

On behalf of the Northmont Friends in Service for Humanity (FISH), Inc., I would like to express our deep appreciation for the support of the staff at Foundation Group for their assistance in guiding us through this process of becoming a nonprofit Corporation and a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.  All of us on the Board of Directors have been impressed with the friendliness, technical knowledge, and professionalism of the Foundation Group staff.  With grateful appreciation…

– Randall Leverage, President, Northmont F.I.S.H.

Thank you for the support The Foundation Group has given us in achieving 501(c)(3) status. Linnea provided us with the guidance and expertise needed to get through the IRS process. I am certain this would not have been possible without her support.

Your efforts have enabled our foundation to continue moving forward with our mission to provide need-based financial support to cancer patients with medical bills not covered by health insurance. This mission is of the highest importance to me as it fulfills a promise to my terminally-ill wife to engage in doing good works in her name.

At one time, I thought it would be impossible to get IRS approval and was planning for a possible discontinuation of operations in the event we were not successful. Linnea exuded the confidence needed to complete the task at hand. She told me to take a deep breath and trust in your ability to guide us through. I cannot express in words how pleased I am at the outcome.

I truly appreciate your caring professionalism and expertise. Your statement, “Trust The Foundation Group to help you turn your dream into reality” is right on target. Linnea and your organization certainly made my dream come true.

– Jerry Kennedy, Margeret Rose Kennedy Foundation -

We received our 501(c)(3) approval letter from the IRS on Saturday. Just wish to say how much we appreciate your effort to do a great job on our application! The quality of your work is evident by the speed and ease of our approval – about 25 days! With our approval in hand, we are now ready to move forward with our organization. Thanks again to you! Best regards…

– Gregory Adamson, I'm Just Like You Project

Please add me to your (referral) list. I was amazed that you did this. I tried to set up a 501c3 through a lawyer years ago and it was hopeless. (This time) the woman from the IRS totally understood what I was doing. The process was seamless. Have anyone call me anytime for a resounding recommendation.

– Carol Highsmith, Twenty-First Century America Foundation -

As a for-profit company converting to a nonprofit, we had a number of rather complex issues to be addressed. You helped us to understand those issues and when the IRS had questions, you took care of absolutely everything. The IRS was happy and we got what we needed: our IRS letter of determination. Now, we are better positioned to fulfill our mission. Thank you, again.

– Vincent Smith, First Step Developmental Independent Care Services

I was so pleased with the friendly and knowledgeable service The Foundation Group (provided) our new nonprofit organization. It was a great investment and a load off my mind to know that there were professionals working on our 501(c)(3). I was able to focus on other tasks instead of trudging through IRS forms. I highly recommend and trust this service!

– Paulette Schell, Morningstar Maternity Home

I just received my letter from the IRS confirming the approval for our tax exempt status! I am extremely happy that this took almost no time at all! Thank you for all of your assistance and guidance with my application. The letter that I received from the IRS states that a copy was sent to your office as well. Please let me know if there is anything that you need from me. I am elated, thank you so much!

– Corinne O'Flynn, Rowan Tree Foundation -

That is OUTSTANDING! I had not expected it until the end of January and it is great to have it before the end of the year as there are several individuals who have indicated an interest in including us in their end-of-year giving but were concerned about the certification…You folks have done an outstanding job and if I can be of any assistance or you wish to use me as a reference, please feel free to do so…Have a great Christmas and a blessed New Year.

– Tim Griswold, Foundation for Caregivers -

I wanted to let you know guys know I just received the IRS approval for our Screen Porch Foundation, which you and Josh helped me with so much in Sept/Oct. Having everything approved quickly and without a hitch is a nice relief! I’ve been so pleased with FG’s assistance. You delivered exactly what you promised, on time and definitely on budget. FG literally saved me thousands of dollars over the quote I got from a lawyer here in Atlanta. You’ve already got a ton of testimonials on your website, but if you want another one, just let me know. Thanks, again!

– Perry Mitchell, Screen Porch Foundation

I just wanted to thank you and everyone in your office for all of your invaluable help! We just got the IRS letter today saying that we got our 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!

– Ann Nowak, Esq., Jacobson Center for the Performing Arts -

We want to thank Dee Hollinger and everyone at Foundation Group for all the work that you did for our 501(c)(3) letter of determination from the IRS. We were ecstatic over the fact that we received it so quickly. Thanks to all that worked so hard to put this together for us. We will recommend FG to everyone that wishes to start a nonprofit organization and will use your services again in the near future ourselves.

– Donald McElfresh, Amerinrio, Inc. -

Our 501(c)(3) was approved by the IRS on September 26. Thanks to you and Foundation Group for making this happen for us. You all did an amazing job. Your company provided us the best customer experience we have ever experienced. May God bless you all.

– Sister Christine Hinds, Ecclesia Deliverance Ministries

Our association had been trying to get 501(c)(3) status for many years without success. The Foundation Group accomplished what several attorneys could not. The FG consultant was professional, friendly and kept us informed of the status of our application throughout the process. We are now a 501(c)(3) public charity thanks to her expertise and persistence.

– Dave Hinkle, Coachelle Valley High School Alumni Association -