When is a no profit a no profit?
Alexander Reed, President of European Parkinson Therapy, Italy.
OH what a tangled web we weave, a no profit is o course designed to give maximum benefit to the people for whom the no profit is designed to benefit.
Recent articles and evidence is that up to 20% of charities are working the system to benefit from tax and fund raising benefits.
The classic techniques are.
- Towards the end of the year, the president (or others with access) on seeing a significant profit may award himself, or invoice through another company such that the year end is indeed a small profit, but who is benefitting?
- Create a small no profit with a fancy name, give yourself the title of President and then use this title on your business cards to promote a profitable business. “President of the international consortium of Neurological research”. Sounds good and will be a no profit as it will not help anybody or indeed make or loose money.
- Create a real no profit that really does benefit others and attracts sponsorhip and donations and set your Salary at a high level that the no profit, may struggle to make a profit. But somebody does !
Of course there are checks and balances in place to oversee such obvious miss use of the no profit Charitable status. Most Charity’s have a membership who can vote down any attempt to exploit the system (as long as the members are not in on the game). The local tax offices are aware of these techniques and may spot a “marker” that will flag such an obvious abuse of the law and morality.
A Neurologist once said I was “making money” out of my Parkinson’s. Well I had not thought of that one…. Get yourself an incurable disease that gradually may drag you to your knees or whealchair with chronic depression and suicidal thoughts. Yup, great idea … NOT! Apart from being highly offensive, it was a little disturbing to see the same Neurologists giving lectures about Parkinson’s and getting paid wads of money!!
We fortunately have a wide membership, financial oversight by an independant financial consultants and we do really exist. Well 400 square metres full of technology and people are hard to miss and I as President and founder take NO salary from the Charity except expenses and have to run another company (a tour operator) to bring in some liquidity. Plus having invested significant funds to make the charity what it is today. So I got that wrong, I have Parkinson’s and I am not paid to have Parkinson’s!!
Look into the eyes of people who run a charity and listen to what they say and what they succeed in achieving. It may be they deserve to be paid much more than they are (or that they deserve to be paid!) Trust what you see and know to be true.
PS : I LOVE the work with our tour operator (when time allows!!)