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Definition of '501(c)'

A 501(c) organization is a nonprofit organization that has been granted tax-exempt status under Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code. This means that the organization is not required to pay federal income tax. However, 501(c) organizations are still subject to other taxes, such as state and local sales taxes.

There are over 30 different types of 501(c) organizations, each with its own set of requirements. Some of the most common types of 501(c) organizations include:

* Charitable organizations
* Educational organizations
* Scientific organizations
* Literary organizations
* Religious organizations
* Social welfare organizations

To qualify for 501(c) status, an organization must meet certain requirements, such as:

* It must be organized and operated exclusively for one or more of the purposes listed in Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code.
* It must not be organized for the benefit of private individuals.
* It must not be a political organization.
* It must file an annual Form 990 with the IRS.

If an organization meets all of the requirements for 501(c) status, it will receive a letter from the IRS stating that it has been granted tax-exempt status. This letter is called a determination letter.

There are a number of benefits to being a 501(c) organization. For example, 501(c) organizations are not required to pay federal income tax. They also receive certain other benefits, such as the ability to receive tax-deductible donations.

However, there are also some disadvantages to being a 501(c) organization. For example, 501(c) organizations are subject to more stringent regulations than other types of organizations. They also have to file more paperwork with the IRS.

Overall, being a 501(c) organization can be a great way to operate a nonprofit organization. However, it is important to weigh the benefits and disadvantages carefully before making a decision.

Here are some additional resources that you may find helpful:

* [IRS website on 501(c) organizations](https://www.irs.gov/charities-non-profits/501c-organizations)
* [Guidestar website on 501(c) organizations](https://www.guidestar.org/501c)
* [National Center for Charitable Statistics website on 501(c) organizations](https://nccs.urban.org/classification/501c)

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