Rhode Island Fundraising Registration Requirements

Rhode Island State Fundraising Registration

Resources for charities, businesses, professional fundraisers, and individuals conducting fundraising activities

 

Rhode Island Nonprofit & Fundraising Company Licenses

Labyrinth provides the state fundraising regulations below as a guide to help you apply for and maintain your ability to fundraise. Need help? We can manage your state registrations for you. Contact us today to learn more.


Rhode Island defines requirements for:

•  Charitable Organization Registration

•   Commercial Co-Venturer Registration

•  Professional Fundraiser Registration

•   Individual Nonprofit & Fundraising Licenses

•  Charitable Gift Annuity Registration


Need a different state? Visit our 50-state Compliance Guide


Rhode Island Charitable Organization Registration

Agency: Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation

Law:   RIGL § 5-53.1-2

Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:  No

Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required? No

Automatic Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:

  • Educational institutions, including parent-teacher associations, the curricula of which in whole or in part are registered or approved by a governmental agency as well as all other educational institutions within this state recognized or certified as educational institutions by a generally recognized and accepted regional or national educational accrediting organization
  • Persons requesting any contributions for the relief of any individual, specified by name at the time of the solicitation, if all of the contributions collected, without any deductions whatsoever, are turned over to the named beneficiary
  • Any charitable organization that does not intend to solicit and receive and does not actually raise or receive contributions in excess of $25,000 during a fiscal year of the charitable organization, provided none of its fundraising functions are carried on by professional fundraisers and no part of its assets or income inures to the benefit of or is paid to any officer, director, member (if a limited-liability company), trustee, partner, or member of the charitable organization (Not including contributions received from corporations, charitable foundations, government agencies, or a duly registered federated fund, incorporated community appeal, or United Way, shall not be included in determining the total amount of contributions received)
  • Organizations that solicit only from their own membership. The term "membership" shall not include those persons who are granted a membership upon making a contribution as the result of a solicitation
  • Persons soliciting contributions solely from corporations, charitable foundations, or governmental agencies
  • Foundations or associations exclusively for the benefit of religious organizations, education institutions, nonprofit or charitable hospitals, and public libraries
  • Hospitals that are nonprofit and charitable
  • Veterans' organizations and their auxiliaries so long as the veterans' organizations are chartered under chapter 6 of title 7
  • Public libraries
  • Historical societies duly organized under the laws of this state
  • Free, not-for-profit, public art museums
  • Grange organizations and their auxiliaries
  • Churches or recognized denominations and religious organizations, societies, and institutions operated, supervised, or controlled by a religious organization or society that solicit from other than their own membership. Institutions indirectly or affiliated with but that are not operated, supervised, or controlled by any religious organizations or religious society that own, maintain, and operate homes for the aged, orphanages, and homes for unwed mothers
  • Volunteer fire and rescue associations
  • Land trusts duly organized under the laws of this state
  • Law:   RI Gen L § 5-53.1-3

    Notes: Charities must register within 30 days if they exceed $25,000 in contributions. 

    Initial Registration

    Form:   Charitable Organizations Application

    Filing Method:   Online or submitted on CD-Rom or on a USB flash drive (paper filings are not accepted)

    Agency Fee:   $90 + $3 online filing fee.

    Turnaround:  2 - 3 weeks

    Notes:

  • Make check payable to General Treasurer, State of Rhode Island
  • Some Rhode Island counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.
  • - Before you Apply -

    Domestic Applicants:

    Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.

    If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.

    Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.


    Foreign Applicants:

    Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.

    If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.

    Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.

    If you will foreign qualify in Rhode Island, obtain a certificate of good standing from your home state to submit during the foreign qualification process. The certificate cannot be more than 60 days old when filing foreign qualification documents.



    - How to Apply -

    Domestic Applicants:

    1. File entity formation documents with the Rhode Island Secretary of State.

    2. Create an online account and complete the charitable organization registration through the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation.


    Foreign Applicants:

    1. Determine whether or not your charity will need to foreign qualify based on your activity in Rhode Island. If not required, skip to number 3.

    2. File foreign qualification documents with the Rhode Island Secretary of State.

    3. Create an online account and complete the charitable organization registration through the Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation.


    - Required Attachments -

  • IRS form 990
  • Audited financials (if applicable)
  • List of officers and directors
  • Professional fundraising contracts
  • List of other states where registered to solicit
  • Trust the #1 Choice for State Charitable Registration
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    Registration Renewal

    Form:   Charitable Organizations Application

    Filing Method:   Online or mail the form on CD-ROM (paper filings are not accepted)

    Agency Fee:   $90 + $3 online filing fee.

    Due: Annually by the registration anniversary date. 

    Due Date Extension: Due dates can be extended for 6 months beyond the original due date by submitting either IRS form 8868 or a letter requesting an extension.

    Notes:

  • Make check payable to General Treasurer, State of Rhode Island
  • You must attach an annual financial report.
  • Required Attachments:

  • IRS form 990
  • Audited financials (if applicable)
  • List of officers and directors
  • Professional fundraising contracts
  • List of other states where registered to solicit
  • Cancellation

    Agency Fee:  $0

    Notes: To close out your registration, simply submit a letter asking to withdraw registration.


     
    I’ve had great experiences with Labyrinth across two organizations, I definitely recommend their services!

    Killjan Anderson – USA BASKETBALL


    Rhode Island Commercial Co-Venturer Registration

    NOT REQUIRED

    Commercial Co-venturer licensure is not required on the State level in Rhode Island.

    Rhode Island does not currently have a traditional registration requirement for commercial co-venturers, but they may need to follow other regulations before and after fundraising events.


     
    Labyrinth has taken the stress out of ensuring our organization is current with all state requirements. Their knowledgeable staff are always available to answer questions and provide guidance giving me peace of mind. I can’t say enough about the value they bring to our organization.

    Beth Lyons, Director of Development, Homes for Our Troops


    Rhode Island Charitable Gift Annuity Registration

    NOT REQUIRED

    Charitable Gift Annuity licensure is not required on the State level in Rhode Island.

    Rhode Island statutes do not address charitable gift annuities, but division of insurance rules exempt charitable organizations from disclosure rules that apply to other entities.


     
    I highly recommend this company for any organization that needs help with state filings. They have excellent customer service, have exceptional pricing, and have a true passion for helping organizations with this service. They are FANTASTIC!!

    Jacquelyn Bussotti, Human Resources Manager, Parkinson’s Foundation



    Rhode Island Fundraising Counsel Registration

    "Fundraising counsel" means any person who for compensation consults with a charitable organization or who plans, manages, advises, or assists with respect to the solicitation of contributions for or on behalf of a charitable organization, but who does not have access to contributions or other receipts from a solicitation and who does not solicit. Bona fide volunteers or employees of a charitable organization, or an attorney-at-law retained by a charitable organization, shall not be deemed a fundraising counsel.

    Agency:   Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation

    Law:   R.I.G.L. § 5-53.1-9

    Initial Registration

    Form: Fundraising Counsel Application

    Filing Method: Flash drive, CD-ROM, or online.

    Agency Fee:   $240

    Registration Renewal

    Form: Fundraising Counsel Application (Renewal)

    Filing Method: Flash drive, CD-ROM, or online.

    Agency Fee: $240

    Due: Annually by June 30.

    Contract Filing

    Agency Fee:   $0

    Due: Copies of all contracts with charitable organizations must be submitted within 10 days after signing.



    Rhode Island Professional Fundraiser Registration

    "Professional fundraiser" means any person who directly or indirectly for compensation or other consideration plans, manages, conducts, carries on, or assists in connection with a solicitation for charitable purposes or individually solicits or who or that employs or otherwise engages on any basis another person to solicit for or on behalf of any charitable organization, or who or that engages in the business of, or holds himself, herself, or itself out to persons as independently engaged in the business of soliciting for the charitable purpose. Bona fide volunteers or employees of a charitable organization or fundraising counsel shall not be deemed a professional fundraiser.

    Agency:   Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation

    Law:   R.I.G.L. § 5-53.1-9

    Bond Requirements: $10,000

    Initial Registration

    Form: Application for Professional Fundraiser

    Agency Fee:   $240

    Original Ink: Not required

    Notarize: Not required

    Notes: A copy of all contracts with charitable organizations must be submitted with the application.

    Before you Apply:

  • Has any government agency or court enjoined the applicant, its directors, members, trustees, senior level executives, employees or sub-contractors from soliciting contributions?
  • Names and addresses of all officers, agents & employees.
  • Required Attachments:

  • Copies of all contracts with charitable organizations (must be submitted within ten (10) days after signing pursuant to R.I.G.L. 5-53.1-9)
  • Bond
  • Taxpayer status affidavit (attached to application as exhibit 1)
  • Registration Renewal

    Form: Application for Professional Fundraiser (Renewal)

    Agency Fee:   $240

    Due:   Annually by June 30.

    Original Ink: Not required

    Notarize: Not required

    Contract Filing

    Agency Fee:   $0

    Due:   Copies of all contracts with charitable organizations must be submitted within 10 days after signing.




    Rhode Island Individual Nonprofit & Fundraising Licenses

    Rhode Island Individual Professional Fundraiser Registration

    Agency:   Rhode Island Department of Business Regulation

    Initial Registration

    Form: Application for Professional Solicitor

    Agency Fee:   $0

    Original Ink: Not required

    Notarize: Not required

    Registration Renewal

    Form: Application for Professional Solicitor (Renewal)

    Agency Fee:   $0

    Due: Annually by June 30.

    Original Ink: Not required

    Notarize: Not required


     
    Thank you, you truly are amazing! And frankly we would be lost in all of this if it wasn’t for you.

    Lisa Strand, Operations Coordinator, Life is Good Playmakers



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