This Non-Profit Bylaws document is used once a non-profit organization has been incorporated to define the structure and operations of the organization. Bylaws are essentially the rules for how the organization will be governed and describe many of the non-profit's activities, such as annual meetings, the composition of the Board of Directors, and voting procedures. Most states require the creation of Bylaws at the same time, or not long after, the incorporation of an organization.
Note: This document is only appropriate for non-profit organizations and, therefore, does not include any information about shareholders. If Bylaws for a for-profit company are needed, this Corporate Bylaws document should be used instead.
How to use this document
This document covers all of the basic information necessary to define the operational structure of a non-profit organization. The Bylaws cover the following essential areas:
Once this document has been completed and reviewed, it should be printed out, certified, and signed. Generally, if a President or Secretary of the organization has already been determined, those individuals are responsible for certifying and signing all corporate documents, including the Bylaws. However, if those roles have not yet been filled, an Incorporator may sign this document in their absence.
Non-profit creation and structure is generally a matter of both state and federal law. Most states require the creation and filing of Bylaws at the same time as or not long after the creation of the Articles of Incorporation. Organizations must also meet specific requirements under the federal Internal Revenue Code in order to file as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
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