How can a nonprofit employer minimize the effects an employee’s leave of absence has on your nonprofit’s work, while still providing the time away from work your employee needs? At a minimum, nonprofits should have leave policies to inform and guide both managers and employees. But even with clear policies, handling extended leave requests under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act can be challenging for an employer to navigate. This article from Venable includes guidance for employers assessing employee requests for extended leave.
Virtually every nonprofit has a website, yet many do not consider the legal ramifications of having one. This webinar focuses on just a few:
- Best practices for website terms and conditions and privacy policies;
- Who owns the rights to the website and other considerations regarding the web host; and
- Intellectual property issues related to domain names, content, pictures, and links to other websites.
Speakers: Katie Bennett & Sarah Parker, Holland & Knight
When an employee requests an accommodation for a disability under the Americans with Disabilities Act (the “ADA”), employers are required to engage in an “interactive process” with the employee to determine if there is a reasonable accommodation that would allow the employee to perform the essential functions of the job. This article from Hopkins & Carley discusses how to engage in that interactive process. Please note that while the article references both the ADA and California law, the guidance it provides is relevant to employers in Georgia who are subject to federal ADA requirements. You can find additional information about the ADA accommodation requirement in A Practical Guide to Disability Accommodation in the Nonprofit Workplace.
What happens when a member of your organization receives an honorarium? Should the payment go to the individual or to the nonprofit? Well, it depends. In this episode of the PBPA Podcast, Kathryn Hecker and Felix Swierski with Arnall Golden Gregory will explore these questions and provide guidance on receiving or paying honoraria. While an honorarium serves as recognition to an individual for their time, expertise, and contributions, it is important to be aware of the legal and tax implications that come with making or receiving honorarium payments.
Can you have a “No Pets at Work” policy? What if an employee has a service dog? What if it is an emotional support dog? What if the person asking is a member of the public and not an employee at all? Nonprofits may receive requests from employees, clients, or others, to bring service or emotional support animals into their spaces. This article from the Bradley law firm provides guidance about when an organization is required to allow such animals and when it is not required.
ChatGPT has become all the rage, inside and outside of the technology world. In fact, I even used ChatGPT to write this intro – but only after taking into consideration the guidance that Creighton Frommer, Counsel at RelX, shares in this episode of the PBPA Podcast. Join us as we talk about ChatGPT and other generative artificial intelligence (AI), the legal issues they raise, and legal tips to guide your nonprofit’s use of this cutting-edge technology.
Zoning laws help determine locations for specific development and facilitate community growth. Join Lisa Morchower, Of Counsel with Berman Fink VanHorn, as she provides an overview of zoning considerations for nonprofit organizations. In this webcast, she will cover such topics as:
- How to determine what your property is zoned for;
- What is a special use permit and variance; and
- What to keep in mind if you go before a zoning board without an attorney
Speaker: Lisa Morchower, Of Counsel, Berman Fink VanHorn
Every day, nonprofits face risk in virtually every aspect of their operations. Since risk cannot be eliminated because life itself involves risk, the goal must be to manage risk. As the word “manage” implies, when a nonprofit attempts to reduce or control, i.e., manage its risk, it takes time, effort and money, all of which can take away from the time, effort and money being spent on the mission of the nonprofit. During this one hour webinar, our speaker will discuss tools that will help nonprofits minimize the amount of time, effort and money consumed by risk management. Specifically, “risk shifting” will be covered in three areas:
- Contracts provisions and forms that shift risks and liability to another person or company;
- Insurance that shifts responsibility for the consequences of risks to an insurance company; and
- How contracts and insurance fit together.
Speaker: George Sewell
To perform their services, many nonprofits rely on volunteers to drive. The circumstances in which a volunteer will drive vary widely, from transporting supplies to taking senior citizens to doctors’ appointments. Regardless of the reason volunteers get behind the wheel, nonprofits should develop a plan to mitigate the risk of having a volunteer on the road on its behalf. This article outlines steps your nonprofit can take to minimize those risks, whether your volunteers drive their own car or your nonprofits’ car or whether they are driving themselves or driving with passengers.Managing Risks with Volunteer Drivers
Have you made resolutions for your nonprofit in this new year? While you probably have resolutions unique to these extraordinary times, there are still “ordinary” risks that should not be overlooked. This article highlights the top legal risks facing nonprofits: managing information, managing relationships, and raising funds. Take stock of your nonprofit’s current practices and make changes for the new year and beyond to minimize these risks.
Top Legal Risks for Nonprofits2
Join us in a conversation with PBPA’s Executive Director, Rachel Spears, as she talks to us about the key legal trends for Georgia nonprofits in the coming year. From the Paycheck Protection Program to Employee Retention Credits to Georgia state legislation, this episode of the PBPA Podcast provides an overview of the 2021 legal outlook for nonprofits.Episode 11 Transcript - 2021 Nonprofit Outlook
Please see the list below, or the attached transcript, for a list of additional resources that Rachel mentions during this episode.
Virtual Workforce: A Year-End Update on COVID-19 and Employment Concerns for Your Nonprofit
COVID Liability Sign: Do This One Thing To Take Advantage of Potential COVID Immunity
Paycheck Protection Program: Paycheck Protection Program Resource List
Employee Retention Credit: “COVID Relief” at the End of 2020: What Small Community-Based Nonprofits Need to Know
Data breaches are becoming more and more common. Whether the incident is “newsworthy” or not, the impact to your nonprofit’s reputation or the ability to operate can be severely impacted through a data breach. So what does it mean if you, or one of your vendors, is the victim of a security breach? In this webcast, our speaker will discuss:
- The difference between an incident and a breach;
- What steps a nonprofit should proactively take to minimize risks;
- How to respond if you receive notification of a vendor’s breach;
- How to navigate the stages of a breach.
Speaker: Ami Rodrigues, Privacy Counsel, Coca-Cola and Toni Igbenoba, Attorney, UpworkSlides - Data Breach
Nonprofits (or NGOs) based outside of the U.S. are usually not eligible to receive tax-exempt status here from the IRS. These NGOs may choose to form a brand new U.S.-based §501(c)(3) or to partner with an existing U.S.-based §501(c)(3) with a similar mission in order to be able to obtain tax-deductible donations from U.S. taxpayers. But U.S.-based nonprofits risk losing their tax-exempt status if they accept donations on behalf of organizations based in other countries without meeting certain IRS requirements. This article outlines the three key factors the IRS uses to determine whether or not a U.S. §501(c)(3) can accept donations on behalf of organizations based outside the U.S.Article - Conduit Organizations
If your organization is subject to HIPAA, there are very stringent laws that dictate how your nonprofit must handle medical records. Even if your nonprofit is not subject to HIPAA, there are several obligations around handling medical records. In this webcast, our speaker will talk about:
- Medical records & COVID-19
- Confidentiality requirements
- How to handle requests for medical information
Speaker: Zeke Van Keuren, Southern Health LawyersNonprofits, HIPAA and Medical Records
Webcast: Building Generational Wealth: Estate Planning Basics – What It Involves and How to Talk About It
Community Leaders, Nonprofit Staff, and Cooperative Extension Agents: Estate planning is your go-to protection against blighted homes, land loss, and generational poverty in the communities you serve. With proper estate planning, your constituents can prevent the creation of heirs property, an unstable form of landownership that limits a family’s ability to make home improvements, manage farm and timber land, and build generational wealth typically leveraged through USDA and bank financing, nonprofit home-repair programs, disaster relief, and business development.
Enhance your financial literacy offerings, ensure your philanthropic investments last, and serve your community better by understanding estate planning. During this webinar, our speakers will help Community Leaders, Nonprofit Staff, and Cooperative Extension Agents understand estate planning basics:
What estate planning includes;
- How to talk about estate planning with communities and clients
- What happens when you die with a will versus without a will
- How estate planning can prevent heirs property
- What decisions need to be made before meeting with an attorney and
- How estate planning impacts Community, Nonprofit, and Cooperative Extension organizations’ goals.
Speakers: Gentry E. Mander, J.D. & Skipper StipeMaas, Georgia Heirs Property Law CenterEstate Planning Basics
The SBA and Treasury issued more clarification about the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”), and what happens if a borrower does not spend at least 60% of their PPP loan on payroll costs. The additional Interim Final Rules state that PPP borrowers may still be eligible to have a portion of their loan forgiven, and the Rules include the formula to calculate the forgivable amount based on loan amount, payroll costs and other PPP loan specified costs. Find out more about these most recent updates to the the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act in this article.Paycheck Protection Program Latest Interim Final Rules - Clarifying Loan Forgiveness
This webinar is an overview of the two tools homeowners have to try to manage their property taxes amid rising home values. Homestead exemptions are a valuable tool for reducing taxes on primary residences and who might be eligible is a little broader than whose name appears on the deed. We will talk about who might be eligible for exemptions and what exemptions might be out there for your clients. We will also touch on the appeal process and what to consider in preparing to appeal the value in the notice of assessment.
Presenters: Stacy Reynolds, Attorney, Senior Citizens Law Project and Cari Hipp, Attorney, Pro Bono Unit, Atlanta Legal Aid Society, Inc.Ways to Lower Your Property Taxes Homestead Exemptions and Tax Appeals
The world of veterans’ benefits is often confusing and misleading. Veterans are frequently left on their own to determine what they may be eligible for and where to find assistance. During this webinar, our speaker will help veterans and their support networks understand:
– The different types of V.A. cash benefits, e.g. V.A. Disability Compensation and V.A. Pension;
– When and how to apply for V.A. cash benefits;
– Non-cash benefits, e.g. health, education; and
– Where to find assistance.
Presenter: Jeremey A. Striegel, Staff Attorney, Senior Citizens Law Project, Atlanta Legal Aid Society, Inc.VA Benefits Webcast -scg edits
Does your organization help participants find housing and sign leases with landlords? Could your organization use a little bit of insight on what all those lease provisions mean? This webcast is intended to walk the listener through:
– Understanding standard lease provisions
– Once it is signed, following the terms of the lease.
– The lease entered into between tenant and landlord is an enforceable contract. If you would like to guide your participants as they take this big step, then tune in!
Updated July 2023
Many nonprofits in Georgia, particularly those that work with vulnerable populations including children, the elderly, and victims of violence, do not permit weapons on their premises. Georgia laws passed in 2014 and 2023 significantly limited organization’s ability to restrict guns on their premises. These changes may affect nonprofits that currently have such restrictions, particularly those that are in government buildings or lease property from a city, county, or the State of Georgia. Read this article to learn more about when a nonprofit can restrict guns on its property.
Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) requires organizations to make reasonable modifications to policies, practices, and procedures in order to make their goods and services available to people with disabilities. While this provision has historically been applied to physical “brick-and-mortar” facilities, some courts, including the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in a recent case, and the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”) are now interpreting the provision as applicable to commercial websites that offer goods or services for sale, including nonprofit websites where goods or services are sold. In addition, private attorneys have been filing lawsuits to challenge the lack of accessibility of commercial websites.Article- Website Accessibility Under the Americans with Disabilities Act 3-19
Confusion over service animals, which are specially trained to help people with disabilities, and emotional support animals, which are used to provide emotional support, but don’t necessarily require any specialized training, have become prevalent in our day and time. Under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), State and local governments, businesses, and nonprofit organizations that serve the public generally must allow service animals to accompany people with disabilities in all areas of the facility where the public is normally allowed to go. So if you run a nonprofit and you run afoul of this provision, you could find yourself in violation of ADA and/or the State or local law. In the State of Georgia, denial or interference is a misdemeanor of a high and aggravated nature punishable by a fine not to exceed $2,000.00, imprisonment for not more than 30 days, or both.Article - Service Animals
You have heard the stories: “Unsuspecting employee gives company bank information to hacker, Company loses millions!” As you read this, you think cybercrime and embezzlement would never happen within your nonprofit. Or could it? In this webcast, John & Anush talk about fraud and your nonprofit, including concerns such as:
• How to detect potential fraud.
• What to do if you suspect there is fraudulent behavior by an employee.
• What to do if you receive a suspicious email.
• Oh no, we were duped! What to do after the fraud has occurred.
In everyday media, privacy is the buzz word. Organizations have been nervously busy for some time understanding which privacy rules apply to their businesses. Often more than one regulation applies. In 2018, the European Union adopted the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), data privacy regulations which are influencing data privacy rules and practices in the United States and internationally. California also has a new privacy law to consider. This article outlines some practical privacy compliance program considerations for smaller organizations.Article - New Privacy Rules and Nonprofits – What You Can Do Now