Everyone with fiscal sponsorship by Jewish Creativity International is responsible for being familiar with the following information and for complying with its requirements.
How does fiscal sponsorship work?
Jewish Creativity International, also known as the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity, receives the money donated or granted to your project, and “re-grants” the money to you by paying your invoices.
Why use a fiscal sponsor?
It allows your donors to receive a tax deduction for donations, and it qualifies you for grants available only to tax-exempt organizations under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
What does it cost?
JCI’s fees amount to 5% of the funds we receive for the benefit of your project. There may also be extra fees for certain optional services such as overnight wire transfers, or compiling special financial reports, but only if you ask for those services and agree in advance to pay the fees. You don’t owe us anything until JCI receives money in support of your project.
Does fiscal sponsorship make my project a 501(c)(3) organization?
No. You receive some of the benefits of JCI’s tax-exempt status, but your project can become a 501(c)(3) only if and when the Internal Revenue Service issues you a letter which determines that you qualify.
How do I get the money that is donated?
By using the money for your project’s expenses. You send us the invoices you receive for goods and services, and we pay those invoices on your behalf. Invoices can include bills for personal services from you and your contractors, to compensate you for the time you spend working on the project.
Can you also receive fees that my project earns and add them to my “account”?
Not usually. Our main purpose as a fiscal sponsor is to process larger grants and contributions, typically those over $250. Payments to you for services you provide – i.e., earned income – should go directly to you.
Can you just send me my money in a lump sum so I can pay my expenses directly?
No. Because the grants and contributions are made payable to us, we’re responsible to the funders for knowing how the money is spent. Specifically, we need to be able to demonstrate that the money was used for appropriate tax-exempt purposes, and in case of grants, that the terms of the grants are being fulfilled. That’s why we make payments directly.
What if I need money in advance for vendors that require prepayment?
That’s fine. You can invoice us ahead of time, with documentation of the expense(s) such as a purchase order, a contract, or a third-party invoice.
How do I submit an invoice?
We accept invoices only by email, not postal mail. If your invoice involves reimbursement for expenses you’ve paid for, you need to attach a receipt for each of those expenses.
Will you send me a confirmation when an invoice has been paid?
No, we won’t. If there’s a deadline or other special reason to expedite and confirm a particular payment, we’ll make every effort to meet your needs.
How quickly do you pay invoices?
We process payments twice a month, so payees almost always receive their funds within 30 days after the invoice reaches us. We make all payments electronically, via Automated Clearing House, so all invoices must include the appropriate bank details for ACH payments.
Can I ask my vendors to bill you directly?
No. They need to invoice you, and you need to approve the invoice before we pay it. We can’t spend your money without your explicit approval.
If I have an employee, does that person become JCI’s employee?
No. You can use the funds you raise through JCI to pay their wages, but if there is an employment relationship, it’s between you and them.
Are any forms needed, besides the invoice, to make a payment?
When a vendor is an individual, a partnership, or an LLC rather than a corporation, we need a signed IRS Form W-9 from the payee. (For persons who don’t reside in the United States, it would be Form W-8.) The forms are available for download at irs.gov. We can’t pay any individual for their services unless we have their W-9 or W-8 on file.
How do I find out my balance – how much money is in my “account”?
Our bookkeeper will send you a report shortly after the end of each month in which you have financial activity.
How can I find out my balance in the middle of a month?
You can’t. Our accounts are updated monthly, not daily, so we don’t have that information to give you, especially for online donations. Your balance is *not* available on demand. You can request a copy of the most recent financial report we’ve sent you, but if you do, you may be assessed a $25 service fee.
How will I know when my grants and donations come in?
We’ll notify you every time we receive money for your project, generally within 24 hours of receipt. As part of that notification we provide you with a Donor Acknowledgement letter, to be forwarded to the donor for their tax records. The Donor Acknowledgement, which also functions as a receipt, is required by IRS rules, and you are obligated to forward it to them.
Can I contact you to find out if you’ve received a particular check I’m expecting?
If you do, the answer will always be No. If we’ve received a check, you’ll already have been notified. If you haven’t been notified, the check hasn’t come in.
How can someone make a donation to my project through JCI?
Grants and gifts of $250 or more should be made by a check payable to Jewish Creativity International, with the name of your project in the Memo line, mailed to this address:
Jewish Creativity International
Att.: [name of your project]2472 Broadway, #331
New York, NY 10025
What about smaller donations?
It’s increasingly common for donors of smaller gifts to prefer online donations, so we partner with a platform called WeDid.it to accept those gifts. Its website is optimized for a variety of strategies including crowdfunding, peer-to-peer funding, and on-site donations at events. It enables you to set up a multiple web pages for different, simultaneous campaigns, using their templates and your content. The funds you raise are automatically forwarded to your JCI “account.” WeDid.it charges additional fees, over and above JCI’s service fee of 5% of the funds we process.
You may also set up your own online campaigns using third-party platforms like Kickstarter or Indiegogo. (They, too, charge fees.) Those campaigns rely on the tax-exempt status of other organizations, so JCI is not involved in any campaign you may choose to launch with them.
For more information about WeDid.it, send us an email at <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
What if someone wants to make an online donation in a larger amount?
With advance notice, they can send us the money via wire transfer. That notice is absolutely necessary: without it, there’s no way to figure out which project the donation is intended to support.
Sometimes nonprofits “thank” donors by sending them a small gift, like a totebag or tickets. Can I do that, as an incentive to get donations?
No, not through Jewish Creativity International. No donor to Jewish Creativity International may receive anything of value as the result of a donation. We accept only donations which are 100% tax-deductible.
When I solicit donations and grants, am I the applicant or is JCI?
Since the funds will be paid to JCI, the legal applicant is Jewish Creativity International – on behalf of your project, of course. If you apply in your own name, the donation would not be tax-deductible, and the application might not meet a foundation’s eligibility requirements.
How do I explain to donors why they are sending their grants or donations to JCI rather than directly to me?
You can tell them that contributions made directly to your project are not tax deductible, because the project does not have tax-exempt status by itself in the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service. Jewish Creativity International—a tax-exempt, nonprofit organization—serves as your fiscal sponsor so that donors can support your work and also receive a tax deduction.
What if they need some documentation of JCI’s nonprofit status?
Send them a copy of our Determination Letter, the official statement by the IRS of our tax-exempt status. There’s a link to that letter at the bottom of every page on our website. It explicitly says that “grantors and contributors may rely on this determination.” You may also want to reinforce the connection by identifying Jewish Creativity International as your fiscal sponsor on your website and in your fundraising materials.
Does Jewish Creativity International have direct contact with my funders?
Not usually. JCI does issue a legally required Donor Acknowledgement letter to grantors/donors for every contribution. But, as noted in Item 17 above, we send each letter to you so that you can forward it to your donor. That strengthens your relationship with them, and avoids confusion over who is in charge of project they’re supporting.
Can you help me with fundraising?
No, we can’t. That’s not our role. Of course we’ll help you comply with the specific procedures of foundations when needed, but we are not in a position to suggest possible funders for your project. Our services are limited to processing the funds that come in and go out.
How would my project, or JCI, terminate the fiscal sponsorship if we wanted to?
The sponsorship effectively ends when all the money in your restricted fund has been spent. If, for any reason, you want to end the relationship before that happens, we’ll work out a mutually agreeable exit plan. That’s essential because, without an agreed-upon process, JCI would be obligated to return any unspent funds to the donors. No one wants that to happen.
Can you help me with my business plan or strategy?
We can offer advice about best practices and suitable strategies on an informal basis, but of course it’s up to you to make any decisions. You’re entirely responsible for all your project’s business decisions.
What’s the difference between Jewish Creativity International and the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity?
We do business as Jewish Creativity International, which is our brand identity. Our legal corporate name is the Center for Jewish Culture and Creativity, and many directories still list us by that name. That’s also the name we use for government filings and some legal documents. They are two different names for exactly the same entity.
USEFUL INFORMATION ABOUT JEWISH CREATIVITY INTERNATIONAL
Federal ID Number (EIN) 95-4328467
Mailing Address: 2472 Broadway, #331, New York, NY 10025
Telephone: (310) 652-5163