GEAPS has a plan to ensure all chapter leaders and chapters, themselves as organizations, would be protected against potential legal and tax liability. GEAPS established several guidelines and best practices for chapters to follow in order to make them legitimate, legal enterprises. This process involved many things.
Your chapter signed the Chapter License & Affiliation Agreement
This document outlines and formalizes the relationship between GEAPS and your chapter. It sets forth mutual obligations, chapter requirements and establishes rules for GEAPS name and logo usage.
Your chapter is incorporated
This means your chapter is a business, an entity; it stands on its own, separate from its leaders. Your chapter was incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation in the state or province where you’re located. Annual or biennial reports are required to maintain your corporate status. GEAPS will file these for your chapter.
Your chapter has a legal address
GEAPS obtained a legal address or “registered agent” for your chapter. This is a physical address in your state or province that was required for your chapter’s incorporation. It is not a chapter leader’s address. This address is for legal purposes only; you should not have your bank statements or other chapter correspondence sent there. Your chapter secretary has this address on file. Permanent records are also kept at the GEAPS Office.
Your chapter has a tax ID number (U.S. Chapters) or Business Number (Canadian Chapters)
Similar to a social security number, a tax ID or business number is your chapter’s identification number. These numbers should be on your bank accounts.
Your chapter is tax exempt
GEAPS has secured tax-exempt status for all chapters. Chapters qualify for tax exemption because of their nonprofit purpose. Being tax exempt does not exempt chapters from all taxes; it exempts chapters from paying federal income tax. Unlike charitable organizations, GEAPS chapters are not exempt from paying sales tax and chapters cannot accept charitable donations. Chapters must file a tax return annually — GEAPS will handle this for your chapter.
Your chapter leaders are protected by Directors and Officers Liability Insurance
All chapters are included in a group Directors and Officers Liability Insurance policy. This coverage protects chapter leaders as they’re acting in their roles as leaders. It is a smart business decision to carry this protection. GEAPS pays the premium.
Your chapter is protected by general liability insurance
All US-based chapters are included in GEAPS general liability insurance policy which means coverage is in place for property damage or personal injury at your events. Coverage for Canadian chapters is coming soon. Want more details on coverage? Contact the Chapter Services Team.