Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster :: Charity
AG Chris Koster | FAQs | Spanish Version / AGO en español



Forms

  • If you are required to register, here are the links to do so.
    • Charitable Organization Initial Registration Statement PDF Get Acrobat Reader
    • Charitable Organization Annual Report PDF Get Acrobat Reader
    • Professional Fundraiser Initial Registration Statement PDF Get Acrobat Reader
    • Professional Fundraiser Renewal Application PDF Get Acrobat Reader
    • Solicitor registration statement for fundraising organizations PDF Get Acrobat Reader
  • If you would like to participate in our Check-a-Charity program, here are the appropriate forms.
    • Registration Instructions PDF Get Acrobat Reader
    • Information Form PDF Get Acrobat Reader

Charitable organizations soliciting donations within Missouri must register with the Attorney General pursuant to § 407.456.1, RSMo.

All charitable organizations that are required to register must file an annual renewal statement within seventy-five days after the end of their fiscal year. § 407.462.2, RSMo.

A $15 fee must accompany all initial registrations and all renewal statements.

The following types of charitable organizations are not required to register:

  1. Religious organizations
  2. Any organization recognized as exempt from taxation under §§ 501(c)(3), (c)(7) or (c)(8) of the Internal Revenue Code, and so long as no part of the net earnings of the organization inure to the benefit of any private party or individual associated with such organization
  3. Educational institutions, and their related foundations
  4. Fraternal, benevolent, social, educational, alumni, and historical organizations —
    So long as their solicitation is confined to their membership
  5. Hospitals and auxiliaries of hospitals, provided all fund-raising activities and solicitations are carried on by employees of the hospital or members of the auxiliary and not by any professional fund-raiser

Frequently Asked Questions about registering with the Attorney General:

Where can I view registration information filed with the Missouri Attorney General?

The registration information filed with the Missouri Attorney General is available on our charity search page.

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What is considered a charitable organization?

Any person or entity who does business in this state, or holds property in this state for any charitable purpose, and who engages in the activity of soliciting funds or donations for any fraternal, benevolent, social, educational, alumni, historical or other charitable purpose. § 407.453 (1), RSMo

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When is my initial registration statement due?

Prior to soliciting within the state of Missouri. § 407.462.1, RSMo

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When must I file my Charitable Organization Annual Renewal Statement?

Within seventy-five days after the end the Charitable Organization’s fiscal year. § 407.462.2, RSMo

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What is considered solicitation of funds for registration purposes?

A solicitation is any request or appeal, either oral or written, or any endeavor to obtain, seek or plead for funds, property, financial assistance or other thing of value, including the promise or grant of any money or property of any kind or value for a charitable purpose. § 407.453(6), RSMo.

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What is not considered solicitation of funds for registration purposes?

Missouri law creates two exceptions to what is considered a solicitation:

  1. Direct grants or allocation of funds received, or solicited from, any affiliated fund-raising organization by a member agency; and
  2. Unsolicited contributions received from any individual donor, foundation, trust, governmental agency or other source, unless such contributions are received in conjunction with a solicitation drive. § 407.453(6), RSMo.

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What is the fee to register as a charitable organization?

A $15 fee must accompany all initial registrations and all renewal statements. § 407.462.1, RSMo

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How does Missouri law define “religious organizations” that are exempt from registration?

Section 407.453(5), RSMo defines religious organizations as any church, society, sect, temple, ... or association of any of the foregoing, or other organization, whether or not incorporated, or any employee thereof… that otherwise qualifies as an exempt organization under § 501(c)(3) that either:

  • Meets at more or less regular intervals for worship of a supreme being or higher power, or for mutual support or edification in piety or with respect to the idea that a minimum standard of behavior from the standpoint of overall morality is to be observed; OR
  • Is an entity that is owned, operated, controlled, supervised or principally supported by, or associated with through the sharing of common religious bonds and convictions; any organization which meets the requirements of this subdivision.

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How does Missouri law define “educational institutions” that are exempt from registration?

An institution with a defined curriculum, student body and faculty, and which conducts classes on a regular basis. § 407.453(3), RSMo

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If my organization is registered in Missouri, do I need to register in any other state?

Yes, if you solicit in states other than Missouri you will most likely need to register in those states. Failure to do so can lead to severe adverse consequences. A few states do not require registration, but the vast majority do. You will need to contact each state in which you solicit donations to find out about how to register. A list of the state agencies that perform registration is available at nasconet.org and multistatefiling.org.

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Do other states exempt from registration organizations that are exempt from taxation pursuant to §§ 501(c)(3), 501(c)(7), or 501(c)(8) of the Internal Revenue Code?

No, only Missouri has this exemption. You will need to contact each state in which you solicit donations to find out about how to register. Failure to do so can lead to severe adverse consequences. A list of the state agencies that perform registration is available at nasconet and multistatefiling.

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What information is required when I register?

A form is provided for initial and renewal applications in the “Forms” section above. Missouri also accepts the Unified Registration Statement or URS.

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Can I file the Unified Registration Statement (URS)?

Yes, Missouri will accept the Unified Registration Statement (URS) so long as it includes all of the information required by our form and is accompanied by the appropriate fee.

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What happens if my organization solicits in Missouri without registering?

If you solicit funds for charitable purposes without being registered you will violate the consumer fraud provisions contained in Missouri’s Merchandising Practices Act, Chapter 407, RSMo. In short, the Missouri Attorney General's authority to pursue consumer fraud applies to the failure to register, as it does to any scam, fraud, swindle, etc. The penalties can be severe since each solicitation constitutes a separate violation of Missouri law. And under Missouri each individual violation can be punished by a civil penalty of $1,000, a ban on solicitation in Missouri, restitution, and other relief. Since the penalties can be harsh we strongly encourage everyone to err on the side of registering.

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Who do I contact for additional information about professional fundraiser registration?

Email Donna Rodenbaugh , call 573-751-3321, or mail to Missouri Attorney General, PO Box 899, Jefferson City, MO 65102

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I am registered, but how do I comply with Missouri's “Do Not Call” laws?

Missouri's Do Not Call laws are explained here on our website. Also, if you are on the “Do Not Call” list and have received telemarketing phone calls let us know by calling 1-866-662-2551 or filling out a complaint form.

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