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Nonprofit Law/Nonprofit boosters club


I have just recently become involved with the boosters club where my son participates in team gymnastics and I have some real concerns with how the nonprofit booster club is operating. I just have a couple of questions and would really appreciate any help you may be able to provide.

The first concern is that when a child becomes a member of the gym's gymnastic team you are required to join the boosters club and to sign a contract, with the booster club, that requires you pay an amount that is determined by officers of the boosters club. The fee's paid  are used to cover competition entry fees, coaches fees and per diem, gym equipment, etc The complaint that has been voiced recently is that although most parents don't mind paying the cost's  necessary for their child to  compete they don't like the fact that they must join the boosters club, and must sign a contract obligating them to pay any amount  the boosters club determine's as appropriate. If all fee's are not paid in advance, on a date as determined by the boosters club,  the child is not allowed to compete in competitions until all assessed fees are paid. My question is, is this process appropriate and more importantly legal for a non profit group.

My next question is that when the boosters have a fundraiser the gym owner requires that 10% of any monies raised be paid to the gym, is this legal? And my last question is that the boosters buys equipment and gives it to the gym. Since the gym is a for profit business their seems to be something wrong with this. Again is this practice legal.

1.  My summary of IRS regulations relating to 501c3 booster organizations is at: and you may be interested to read that. There you will see that a 501(c)(3) organization may not require families to join. Fees may be paid directly to the private gym, but, if the private gym wants the booster organization to collect fees from the family and pass them onto the gym, that would be fine, but that does not require membership.

2. The gym owner may ask for funds from the 501(c)(3) organization, but the booster organization is not required to give any amount to the gym, unless the booster organization has a contract with that gym to provide services to youth.  I don't know what you mean, then, by the phrase "the gym owner requires".  That implies that the gym owner has some authority over the booster organization. for-profit gym
starting on pages 11 "Private Facility Owners" which discusses
prohibited private benefit and excessive control of the booster
organization by such private facility owners.

3.  The 501(c)(3) organization may not purchase equipment and give that to a for-profit entity as that is considered "private benefit", besides the fact that the equipment may be used for persons other than youth. for-profit gym
starting on pages 11 "Private Facility Owners" which discusses
prohibited private benefit and excessive control of the booster
organization by such private facility owners.

Harvey Mechanic, Attorney at Law -

P.S. This response is intended to be a general statement of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship.  

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Harvey Mechanic


I am an attorney and I volunteer time to answer general questions about U.S. Federal income tax issues of nonprofit 501(c)(3) public charities only. Those questions could be about establishing and maintaining legal requirements for such non-profit organizations in the United States, including Internal Revenue service filings and requirements. I will not be working on this free forum to answer questions about Nonprofit's possible unrelated or for-profit businesses or how to fill out forms. This forum is only for general questions about federal tax law, not as the law applies to your specific situation. If you do not make your question public then I will not be spending much of my donated time on answers that would not benefit the public. If you have other questions, please contact me at I will reply from my email. In any case, do not reveal confidential information to me until after I have contracted with you to provide personal legal services. My responses on this forum are intended to be general statements of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice, and do not create an attorney/client relationship. For me to consider your individual situation and how the law applies, I would need to gather extensive information about the situation. To search my previous answers you can do a Google search by "" without the quotes and then add your search terms before hitting enter.


I have been practicing law and especially the law of nonprofit organizations since 1990 when I was admitted to the New York Bar and I have maintained my status with the Bar since that time.


B.S. Columbia University in New York City, 1970

J.D. (Law Degree) Brooklyn Law School, 1990 -- Cum Laude.

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