Connecticut Nonprofit Corporation

Forming a Connecticut nonprofit corporation has never been easier. The information below should help you make sense of some of the terminology, requirements, paperwork, and other important aspects of starting a nonprofit corporation in Connecticut.

What is a nonprofit corporation?

A nonprofit corporation—known as a Nonstock Corporation in Connecticut—is a type of organization structure in which shares of stock are not sold (as in a for-profit corporation) to raise capital with profits going to benefit the shareholders.

Rather, a nonprofit corporation's profits are invested back into the entity so that it can continue benefiting others.

How do I start a nonprofit corporation in Connecticut?

First, it's important to know what type of nonprofit corporation you'd like to start. If you're simply a corporation conducting general nonprofit activities, then you will simply register your Certificate of Incorporation for Nonstock Corporation, similar to Articles of Incorporation, with CONCORD, the Commercial Recording Division of the Secretary of State.

However, if you'd like your nonprofit corporation to be a federally tax-exempt charitable organization, able to accept tax-deductible donations and enjoy other benefits provided to federally recognized charities, then you'll likely need to apply for 501c3 (or other 501) status with the IRS.)

Articles of Incorporation

A Connecticut nonprofit corporation will provide, at minimum, the following information in its Certificate or Articles of Incorporation:

  • Corporate Name (must be unique and distinct from other Connecticut corporations or LLCs on file)
  • "The corporation shall: not have members / only have members, which are not entitled to vote / have one class of members / have multiple classes of members which classes are designated as follows" (if the last option is selected, manner of election/appointment and qualification/rights of members must be specified)
  • Registered Agent's name/address/signature (can be either an individual or a business entity in Connecticut)
  • Other information*
  • Incorporator's name/address/signature

* If forming a Connecticut nonprofit corporation is the end goal, the Nonstock Certificate of Incorporation does not require additional information here. However, if the entity intends to go on to apply for 501c3 status from the IRS, certain 501c3 language must be inserted here. can help with this 501c3 language.

In addition to your Certificate of Incorporation, you'll also need the following documents:

  • Corporate Bylaws
  • EIN (Employer Identification Number
  • Organization and First Report
  • Any required Business Licenses or Permits

501c3 Nonprofit Status

As mentioned above, if you plan to accept tax-deductible donations, registering a Connecticut nonprofit corporation is just the first step. Before any tax-exemptions are granted, you'll first need to be granted 501c3 nonprofit status from the IRS.

The 501c3 application process is a lengthy one, one which can take as many as 9 months or more, but the process starts with your Nonstock Certificate of Incorporation. Make sure to check with the IRS to make sure you're including the required information.

[Note: When registers your nonprofit corporation, as long as we know you'd like to register as a 501c3 nonprofit (which we can also help get you started with), we'll make sure to include the required 501c3 language right away, with your first filing. No Articles of Amendment required!]

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Other types of businesses in Connecticut

A corporation isn't right for everyone. If you're not sure if a Connecticut corporation is the right type of business for you, take a look at information on other types of state entities below: