Fiscal Sponsorship is used primarily when a non-profit film/video project or event wants to secure funding from foundation, government or corporate sources that give only to nonprofit organizations with IRS tax-exempt status. To be considered exempt, an organization must hold a current 501(c)(3) certificate from the IRS.
Rather than attempt to secure tax-exempt status for a film/video project or production company (a lengthy, involved and costly process), individual filmmakers may contract with a fiscal sponsor to extend tax-exempt status to that specific project.
As a fiscal sponsor, the Film Collaborative collects all funds for a project, redistributes the funds as necessary, keeps a separate ledger for all funds accepted for the individual's project, and makes records of such transactions available to those who might require it. The Film Collaborative maintains these records in the form of account status reports and other disclosures required by grant guidelines and/or federal law.
Like most fiscal sponsors, the Film Collaborative charges an administrative fee for any monies granted through our Fiscal Sponsorship program. This 5% fee covers the cost of our management of donations to your project (including costs associated with bookkeeping, check distribution, fiscal reporting to funders, inclusion on our web site, donations accepted through our web site, and on-going technical assistance).
The primary advantage to working with a fiscal sponsor is that it allows an individual to solicit funds from government, foundation, individual and other philanthropic sources. Furthermore, these donations are then tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
According to standard principals and law, projects contracted with a fiscal sponsor must be consistent with the fiscal sponsor's charitable purposes. In terms of the Film Collaborative, this means that any project you are proposing must be noncommercial and represent an imaginative contribution to the film or video art form.
Having a nonprofit fiscal sponsor does not make an individual "nonprofit" or "tax-exempt" — only the IRS can make a tax-exempt ruling.
Guidelines for your Project Proposal can be found on the proposal guidelines page.
When a project is approved for Fiscal Sponsorship, the filmmaker will enter into a signed agreement that stipulates that the filmmaker must: