Michael Stummer’s Step by Step Guide for Becoming a 501c3 in Ohio

Now that you know what a 501c3 is, it’s time to discuss how to become a 501c3 in Ohio. As the President of the Upper Arlington High School Boosters, I am constantly asked for advice on how high school teams can become a 501c3 organization. Here is my step by step guide:

  1. File for articles of incorporation with Secretary of State. 7–10 days $125
    A. Need a statutory agent.
    B. Purpose and attachment of additional provisions

2. Apply for EIN through IRS 1–3 days
A. Need articles date in order to apply for EIN

3. Apply for 501c3 status by completing IRS Form 1024 (2–3 weeks) $850 (if annual gross receipts over $10k) $300 if less than $10k
A. Need EIN
B. Need Articles of Corporation and date of incorporation
C. Need By-Laws
D. Need financials


Revenue Categories:

A. Gifts, grants, and contributions (most likely NA)
B. Membership fees received (our $200/player?)
C. Gross receipts from admissions, merchandise sold (meat sale, banner ad) and services performed (concession volunteers).
D. Unusual grants (one time gift from old organization to new organization)

Expense Categories

A. Fundraising expense (cost of meat, selling materials for meat/banner, cost of banner)
B. Contributions, gifts, grants paid out (most likely NA)
C. Professional fees (accountant to prepare 990, website developer)
D. Unclassified expense (501c3 application, articles of corporation)
E. Disbursement to or for the benefit of members (uniforms, equipment, camps, transportation, tournament fees, banquet, team meals, programs, photographer, one call, senior night, etc)


3. continued…
E. Need Conflict of Interest Policy
F. Need a website
G. Description of fund-raising programs
H. Part X is 509a2
I. Explanation of unusual grant and copy of bank info showing the grant (if starting new organization).
J. Schedule G if successor to other organization (see I directly above).

4. Open new bank account with EIN number and incorporated name of organization (immediate).

5. Report to Attorney General