Hello, I'm looking for an attorney who has experiences in working with intentional community or ecovillage.
We are members of intentional community in South Korea, and we are trying to expand our meditation program by establishing an educational center and eventually buy enough land to form intentional community here.
We think either 503(c) nonprofit organization under educational or religious purpose would be most suitable for us, but we have few concerns and confusions regarding this legal categories and have been unable to make the decision.
I would like to either talk to an attorney or meet in person to discuss issues more in depth, and I'm looking for an attorney who has dealt with intentional communities and has deep understanding of them.
Any recommendation or suggestion?
You can use the find a lawyer feature of avvo to find attorneys in your community who would be able to help you.
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Tax lawyers with experience in forming tax-exempt entities are the ones to whom you want to speak. Internal Revenue Code Section 501(c)(3) simply means that the entity is tax-exempt. That section does not tell you whether it is a private foundation or public charity. For public charity status you have to qualify under Section 509(a)(3). Once you secure tax-exempt status from the national office of the IRS, you have to submit the favorable determination letter to the state of California for state exempt status. It can be a lengthy process. Gaining religious status has its own hurdles to overcome. I'd be happy to counsel you about it. To get tax-exempt status is a minimum of $10,000, and for public charity status is usually double that.
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