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An open sourced guide to creating a nonprofit in Michigan.
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An Open Sourced Guide to Creating a Nonprofit in Michigan

Slack: #501c3

Project Description: This project will outline the steps to become a recognized 501c3 nonprofit based in the state of Michigan. Becoming a 501c3 is an IRS designation (federal government), prior to that you must organize in the state in which you are located which may have different rules then Michigan.

Project Guide:

  • Allen Clark

Data: n/a


Skills you may learn or already posses relevant to this project.

  • Outreach/Storytelling
  • Policy & Engagement
  • Product Management
  • Strategy
  • Talent


If you’re looking to start a Michigan nonprofit organization, you’re in the right place. This guide will help you file formation documents, obtain tax identification numbers, and register for fundraising.


  • State of Michigan Form CSCL/CD-502: Articles of Incorporation for use by Domestic Nonprofit Corporations or Form CSCL/CD-503: Articles of Incorporation for use by Ecclesiastical Corporations
  • Bylaws
  • IRS Form SS-4: Apply for EIN
  • IRS Form 1023: Application for 501(c)(3) Exemption
  • IRS Determination Letter
  • Form 518: Registration for Business Taxes
  • Form 3372: Michigan Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption
  • URS Charitable Registration, if applicable
  • Michigan Initial Solicitation Registration Form


  • State of Michigan Incorporation: $20 + optional $50-1,000 expedite service
  • 501(c): $275 - $850 IRS fee


  • State of Michigan Incorporation: ~5-7 business days with returned documents in ~4 weeks. ~24 hours for $50. Same day for $100. 2 hours for $500. 1 hour for $1,000.
  • 501(c): ~3-6 months

Getting Started


Document Examples from Citizen Labs

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