Maryland Fundraising Licensing

Resources for charities, businesses, professional fundraisers, and individuals conducting charitable solicitation activities
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Below, you'll find licensing requirements for a range of fundraising activities. At a glance, you can see requirements, fees, filing instructions, and links to forms for everything from charitable gaming and cause marketing to professional fundraisers and charitable gift annuities.

Make sure your fundraising activities meet the unique requirements of each jurisdiction where you’re soliciting. Feel free to explore, bookmark, and share!

Maryland charitable solicitation license, Maryland fundraising license
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Company Licenses

Maryland Nonprofit & Fundraising Company Licenses

Maryland Bingo and Raffle Licenses

Not required



Charitable Gaming licensure is not required on the State level in Maryland.

There is no state level licensing for games of chance in Maryland, however, many Maryland counties license charitable organizations for games of bingo and raffles.

Maryland Charitable Gift Annuity Registration

Agency:Maryland Insurance Administration
Law:

MD Ins. Code § 16-114

Organization Age Requirement:

10 years of continuous existence immediately preceeding licensure.

Audit Requirements:

Audited financial statements are required with the annual permit renewal.

Initial Registration

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

Maryland requires charities to apply for a permit to receive exemption from state insurance laws. There is no form, but the charity should submit proof that it meets the requirements for exemption. To qualify organizations must have been in existence as a 501(c)(3) for at least 10 years and must maintain a separate fund reserve fund for annuity funds.

Fact Checked:12/4/17

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

Annually within 90 days of the charity's fiscal year end.

Notes:

There is no renewal form, but charities should submit the required statements and audit to renew their permit.

Fact Checked:12/4/17

Maryland Charitable Organization Registration

Agency:Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division
Law:

Maryland Ann. Code, Business Regulation Article, § 6-401 et seq

Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No
Fact Checked:4/10/20

One-Time Exemption Registration

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • A volunteer organization of firefighters or rescue or ambulance personnel for its ambulance, fire fighting, or rescue operations

 

Charitable organizations that do not use a professional solicitor and either:

  • solicit charitable contributions for a named individual and the gross amount is delivered to the individual;
  • are a religious organization, a parent organization of a religious organization, or a school affiliated with a religious organization and have in effect a declaration of tax-exempt status from the government of the United States;
  • solicit charitable contributions only from their members (including accredited educational institutions that limit solicitations to students, former students, parents of a student or former student, present or former board members, and staff members); or
  • only receive contributions from for-profit corporations and organizations determined to be private foundations by the government of the United States

 

Additionally, the Secretary of State may exempt from the requirement of a registration statement or annual report a charitable organization that:

  • is organized under the laws of another state that has a statute substantially similar to this title;
  • has been exempted from the submission of a registration statement by that other state;
  • has its principal place of business outside of Maryland; and
  • gets its money principally from sources outside of Maryland.
Law:

Maryland Ann. Code, Business Regulation Article, § 6-102 and Maryland Ann. Code, Business Regulation Article, § 6-413

Notes:

There is no registration requirement, but charities must submit a letter to the Secretary of State stating their claim of an exemption.

Fact Checked:1/16/20

Registration to Obtain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:

Charities that received less than $25,000 in contributions during their most recent fiscal year

Form:

Exempt Organization Fundraising Notice

Agency Fee:

$0

Fact Checked:8/15/18

Renewal to Maintain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:

Charities that received less than $25,000 in contributions during their most recent fiscal year

Form:

Exempt Organization Fundraising Notice (Renewal)

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

Annually within 8 months after fiscal year end.

Fact Checked:8/15/18

Initial Registration

Form:

URS or Form COR-92: Charity Registration

Filing Method:

Mail

Agency Fee:

$0-300, depending on charitable contributions

Turnaround:

4-6 weeks

Notes:
  • The nonprofit's president, chairman, or principal office must sign. The signature need not be notarized.
  • Upon approval, you will receive a Certificate of Solicitation.
  • Some Maryland counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.
Before you Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  • Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.
  • If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.
  • Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.

Foreign Applicants:

  • Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.
  • If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.
  • Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.
  • If you will foreign qualify in Maryland, obtain a certificate of good standing from your home state to submit during the foreign qualification process. The certificate cannot be more than 90 days old when filing foreign qualification documents.
How to Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  1. File entity formation documents with the Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (SDAT).
  2. Submit a Charity Registration application or URS and all required attachments to the Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division.

Foreign Applicants:

  1. Determine whether or not your charity will need to foreign qualify based on your activity in Maryland. If not required, skip to number 3.
  2. File foreign qualification documents with the Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (SDAT).
  3. Submit a Charity Registration application or URS and all required attachments to the Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division.
Required Attachments:

  • IRS form 990
  • Audited financials (if applicable)
  • Articles of incorporation
  • Bylaws
  • IRS determination letter (or IRS form 1023 if exemption is pending)
  • List of officers and directors
  • Professional fundraising contracts
Fact Checked:4/14/20

Registration Renewal

Form:

Maryland Annual Update of Registration. The URS is not accepted.

Filing Method:

Mail

Agency Fee:

$0-300, depending on charitable contributions

Due:

Due annually 6 months after the close of your organization's fiscal year. So if your fiscal year ends December 31, then renewal is due June 30.

Due Date Extension:

Due dates are automatically extended for 4.5 months beyond the original due date.

Penalties:

There is a late fee of $25 for each month that passes after the due date.

Notes:
  • Make sure to include all required attachments, including annual financial report
Required Attachments:

  • IRS form 990
  • Audited financials (if applicable)
  • List of officers and directors
  • Professional fundraising contracts
  • Only if amended: IRS determination letter, articles of incorporation, and bylaws
Fact Checked:2/4/20

Change of Fiscal Year

Form:

Maryland Annual Update of Registration

Agency Fee:

Varies

Notes:

Fiscal year can be changed during the standard renewal process.

Fact Checked:12/7/18

Cancellation

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

To close out your registration, submit articles of dissolution or a letter stating the organization is no longer soliciting in Maryland. Past due filings or fees are not required in order to close an organization's registration.

Fact Checked:7/14/20

Maryland Commercial Co-Venturer Registration

Not required



Commercial Co-venturer licensure is not required on the State level in Maryland.

Maryland does not currently have a traditional registration requirement for commercial co-venturers, but they may need to follow other regulations before and after fundraising events.

Maryland Fund-Raising Counsel Registration

Agency:Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division
Fact Checked:7/5/18

Initial Registration

Form:

Application to Register as a Fund-Raising Counsel

Agency Fee:

$250

Fact Checked:7/5/18

Registration Renewal

Form:

Application to Register as a Fund-Raising Counsel (Renewal)

Agency Fee:

$250

Due:

Annually

Fact Checked:7/5/18

Contract Filing

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

A Fund-Raising Counsel is required to submit a copy of each fund-raising agreement by the tenth day after the agreement is made or the start of the charitable solicitation, whichever is earlier.

Fact Checked:8/1/19

Maryland Professional Solicitor Registration

Agency:Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division
Bond Requirements:

$25,000

Initial Registration

Form:

Application to Register as a Professional Solicitor, Fund-Raising Counsel, or Public Safety Solicitor

Agency Fee:

$350

Original Ink:Not required
Notarize:Not required
Fact Checked:12/15/16

Registration Renewal

Form:

http://sos.maryland.gov/Charity/Pages/Register-Professional-Solicitor.aspx

Agency Fee:

$350

Due:

Annually

Fact Checked:12/15/16

Contract Filing

Form:

Fund-Raising Notice for Professional Solicitors

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

File a fundraising notice prior to starting a public solicitation campaign.

Fact Checked:8/1/19

Financial Reporting

Form:

Accounting Report for Professional Solicitors

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

A final accounting report is required within three months after the end of each fund-raising campaign and must account for all funds received and disbursed during the entire fund-raising campaign.

Fact Checked:8/5/19

Maryland Public Safety Solicitor Registration

Agency:Maryland Secretary of State - Charitable Organizations Division
Bond Requirements:

$25,000

Initial Registration

Form:

Application to Register as a Professional Solicitor, Fund-Raising Counsel, or Public Safety Solicitor

Agency Fee:

$100

Notes:

This application must be submitted by a Public Safety Solicitor for each Public Safety Organization with which the Public Safety Solicitor contracts.

Fact Checked:8/5/19

Individual Licenses

Maryland Individual Nonprofit & Fundraising Licenses

Maryland Individual Professional Fundraiser Registration

Not required



Professional Solicitor licensure is not required on the State level in Maryland.

Solicitors who are not employed by a professional fundraising firm but operate independently may be required to register. Employees of professional fundraising firms are generally not required to register as an individual solicitor in Maryland.

Learn about fundraising in other states:

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