After a lively and informative discussion of not for profit corporations, we had to do some research. The question was posed, why would you become a not for profit instead of a non-profit 501c3? It appears that there are some very good reasons to go the way of Not For Profit.
Not For Profit is a state designation, rather than federal. It's significantly cheaper than filing for 501c3 status as well. For $125 you can file as a Not For Profit in PA. You may need to hire an attorney to assist you with the articles of incorporation, docketing statement and ascertaining if you will need any other governmental approvals (for example, using words that are regulated such a financial institution, insurance, etc). However, it's still a quick process and you can become a Pennsylvania Not For Profit in about two weeks, according to the PA Dept of State.
Pennsylvania requires publication of your incorporation in one legal journal and one newspaper of general circulation.So you become a Not For Profit. You avoid the rigors of paying $800 and waiting a year for the IRS to designate you a federal charitable institution. You don't have to file a 990 that could be subject to public scrutiny. Pennsylvania law requires every nonprofit corporation to have a President, Treasurer, and Secretary (i.e. officers who perform comparable duties) and a single person may hold all three offices. You can also file for exemption of sales tax.
And, perhaps most importantly, you can pay yourself a salary. You can solicit for donations, not that they will be tax deductible, and you can pay yourself a nice salary to support your work.
In the equine rescue world this seems nothing short of brilliant. We should all become non-profits. It limits personal liability, allows for a nice salary, in some cases you can file for exemption of real estate taxes and you can buy everything you need free of sales tax. And, you can ask the world to send you cash in the name of rescuing horses.
Excuse me, but I have some documents to go fill out.