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What nonprofit businesses can I form in North Dakota?

On Behalf of | May 3, 2024 | Business Law |

Not every person who wants to start a business has profit in mind. You may have a desire to serve a North Dakota community in some way with your organization. Fortunately, you not only have the option of creating a nonprofit, but you may create one of a variety of business types.

The North Dakota Secretary of State describes three different ways to form a nonprofit in the state. Each form comes with its own advantages and considerations.

A nonprofit corporation

This structure provides liability protection for its members and creates a distinct legal entity separate from its founders. This means your nonprofit will have its own rights and privileges, though it will have its own liabilities as well.

To create a nonprofit corporation, you must file Articles of Incorporation with the state Secretary of State. This filing must follow the state’s Nonprofit Corporations Act. If you receive approval, you will obtain a Certificate of Incorporation.

A nonprofit limited liability company

This is a hybrid structure that combines elements of a corporation and a partnership. It offers liability protection for its members while allowing for more flexibility in management and operation. Unlike a nonprofit corporation, a nonprofit LLC does not require a board of directors, and its members have greater control over the organization’s decision-making process.

To have the state recognize your nonprofit LLC, you are to file Articles of Organization with the state’s Secretary of State office. This will help you acquire a Certificate of Organization.

An unincorporated entity

This is the simplest form of a nonprofit organization. It does not have a separate legal existence from its members, which means its members may be personally liable for the organization’s debts and obligations.

If you have a small, informal group with limited activities and liabilities, an unincorporated entity may be an effective option for you. Unincorporated entities also work well for people who have a simple purpose and want to create goodwill with the public for their cause.

The choice of business type for a nonprofit in North Dakota depends on various factors, including the size of the organization, activities and desired level of liability protection. Give careful consideration to the advantages and disadvantages of each option to ensure your nonprofit aligns with your goals and needs.