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Nonprofit Law/Getting a travel baseball team 501c3 status


I have just recently helped set up a nonprofit travel baseball team in PA. We are about to file the IRS forms to apply for 501c3 status and are having a hard time trying to distinguish whether our team would fall under the charitable, educational, or qualified amateur athletic organization heading. The organization consists of two travel baseball teams that hold regular practices. The kids get specific training for hitting, pitching, etc. and also general conditioning. They will also be involved in tournaments throughout the year, requiring travel to several different states. Are these activities sufficient to gain the 501c3 exempt status? Thanks for your time and I appreciate any answer you can give.

The IRS has taken a position that "[a]n organization may
be educational within the meaning of IRC 501(c)(3) if it teaches
sports to youth or by being affiliated with an exempt educational
organization. Such educational organizations may also provide
facilities and equipment."

That IRS internal memorandum refers to Rev. Rul. 80-215 which is

In that Revenue Ruling's "Law and Analysis" area we see the
description of the general law
---Start of Excerpt--
Section 501 (c) (3) of the Code provides for the exemption from
federal income tax of organizations organized and operated
exclusively for charitable purposes.

Section 1.501 (c) (3)-1(d) (2) of the Income Tax Regulations
provides that the term "charitable" is used in section 501(c) (3)
of the Code in its generally accepted legal sense and includes the
advancement of education and the promotion of social welfare by
organizations designed to combat juvenile delinquency.

Trusts created for the purpose of promoting sports for children
have been upheld as charitable on the basis of either combatting
juvenile delinquency or advancing education. Restatement (Second)
Trusts (1959), section 374(n); IV Scott on Trusts (3d ed. 1967),
section 374-6A; Bogert, Trusts and Trustees (2d ed. 1964), section
--- End of Excerpt ---
Therefore, your organization could be a mixture of educational and charitable purposes and the activities you mentioned are sufficient to obtain from the IRS 501(c)(3) organization status.

Harvey Mechanic, Attorney at Law -

P.S. This response is intended o 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


DO NOT GIVE ME INFORMATION THAT YOU WANT KEPT CONFIDENTIAL. 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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