What is fiscal sponsorship?
Fiscal Sponsorship is when a nonprofit organization / foundation (registered as a 501(c)(3) with the U.S. Internal Revenue Service) agrees to
"sponsor" the activities of an individual, for-profit organization or
corporation, foreign nonprofit, or any other type of organization, association,
Fiscal sponsorship allows donations to that sponsored individual or organization to be tax deductible. Fiscal sponsorship is often used by existing nonprofits to further their
charitable or philanthropic public benefit purposes, or to incubate new
nonprofit initiatives without the cost and time burden of registering a new
EMF Fiscal Sponsorship General Guidelines:
Environmental Media Fund, Inc. ("The Fund") offers fiscal sponsorship to qualified
not-for-profit organizations, for profit organization projects, partnerships and
individuals in order to advance the Fund’s tax exempt purposes. Under a fiscal
sponsorship arrangement, the Fund enters into a “pre-approved grant
relationship” with an entity that is not a public charity in its own right.
Donations to sponsored entities are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law.
By providing fiscal sponsorship services to these efforts, the Fund is
helpful in several ways. When sponsored by the Fund, initiatives and projects
that are start-ups or of limited duration can benefit from eliminating the costs
of establishing and then dismantling independent corporate status and
accompanying administrative functions. These entities also benefit from the
Fund’s ongoing involvement in the charitable and philanthropic community, and
its expertise and the experience of its personnel. Independent efforts
responding to unforeseeable crises and urgent situations can be located at the
Fund, supporting immediate commencement of a responsive project and receipt of
charitable donations, without waiting for the completion of legal formation
The Fund’s general obligations as a fiscal sponsor in such projects might
include receiving funds, accounting for funds, reviewing or completing reports,
disbursing funds, and contracting for any required services. The Fund may also
become the legal employer of staff if the level of support necessary for its
projects so requires. The Fund will charge sponsored projects for the cost of
internal administration and management, through a reasonable administrative
The following guidelines will govern the Fund’s proposed sponsorship
ELIGIBILITY: The Fund will sponsor only to the
- Organizations exempt from federal income tax under Sections 501(c)(3) and
509(a)(1), (2), or (3) of the Internal Revenue Code;
- Other organizations engaged in activities, projects or initiatives that are
exclusively for charitable, scientific, or educational purposes, as defined by
the Code, who are selected on a nondiscriminatory basis without regard to race,
sex, religion, or national origin, and whose principals and officers are not
related by blood or marriage to any officer or director of the Fund, with the
Fund retaining discretion and control within the meaning of Rev. Rul. 68 489;
- Individuals or Partnerships engaged in activities, projects or initiatives
that are exclusively for charitable, scientific, or educational purposes, as
defined by the Code, who are selected on a nondiscriminatory basis without
regard to race, sex, religion, or national origin, and who are not related by
blood or marriage to any officer or director of the Fund, with the Fund
retaining discretion and control within the meaning of Rev. Rul. 56 304;
CRITERIA: The Board of Directors of the Fund
will select projects to sponsor whose proposed activities, in the sole judgment
of the Board of Directors, will further the exempt purposes of the Fund.
ADMINISTRATION FEES: An administration fee
(“Administration Fee”) will be charged to the sponsored project based on the
total donations funded through this fiscal sponsorship Agreement. Contributions of stocks, bonds or other assets (non cash) may required additional processing fees.
- Administrative Fees on funds raised through donors solicited by the Grantee
shall be assessed at 5% of the value of all funds received.
- Administrative Fees on funds raised through any donors introduced to the
sponsored project by the Fund (“EMF Donors”) shall be assessed at
10% of the value of all funds received.
- Administration Fees on fund raised collaboratively (jointly developed submission packages, proposals or applications) by the Grantee and EMF shall be assessed at 7.5% of the value of all funds received.
- Electronic online donations through the producer’s web site
(“Donate” button) may
require charges of additional processing fees.
MAKING AN APPLICATION: Applications are only
accepted electronically via email to Fiscal Sponsorship. The applicant for
fiscal sponsorship should provide the following:
- The legal name and type of entity making the application (with copies of its
- The names and titles of all principals, officers, directors, managers and /
or key personnel.
- A complete description of the initiative / project / organization that
includes: See our Submission Template for details.
Due to limited resources EMF does not accept requests for assistance for projects produced outside the United States.