How To Be A Successful Philanthropist

By Bruce R. Hopkins
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You want to be a philanthropist. You have the money. You have the drive. You have a cause in mind. What more could there be to it than that? Giving money away is easy, right? Anyone who has done any large amount of charitable giving knows how naïve, and potentially economically disastrous, that mindset really is. The laws and IRS rulings that regulate charitable giving can, and do, fill volumes. If a budding philanthropist isn’t careful, he or she can wind up paying as much (or more) in penalties and legal fees as they did to their charity of choice. Just think how much good that money could have done if it were applied correctly.

Should you give to an established charity or start one of your own? What’s the difference between a public charity, a foundation, and a donor-advised fund? Can you work for your own charity and earn a paycheck? Can your kids? Bruce R. Hopkins has the answers to all of these questions, plus several dozen more that you didn’t even know to ask.

About the Author

Bruce R. Hopkins concentrates on the representation of tax-exempt organizations, practicing with the Bruce R. Hopkins Law Firm, LLC, Kansas City, Missouri. He is the Professor from Practice at the University of Kansas School of Law. He has authored or coauthored 40 books on nonprofit law subjects, including The Law of Tax-Exempt Organizations, Twelfth Edition; The Tax Law of Charitable Giving, Fifth Edition; The Law of Fundraising, Fifth Edition; Starting and Managing a Nonprofit Organization: A Legal Guide, Seventh Edition; Ultra Vires: Why the IRS Lacks the Jurisdiction and Authority to Regulate Nonprofit Governance; Bruce R. Hopkins’ Nonprofit Law Dictionary; Tax-Exempt Organizations and Constitutional Law: Nonprofit Law as Shaped by the U.S. Supreme Court; Beware the Commerciality Doctrine and Other Nonprofit Law Poetry; Nonprofit Law Poetry: The Second Book; and Fulfilling a Dream: The Ultimate Law Degree. He writes a monthly newsletter, the Bruce R. Hopkins’ Nonprofit Counsel, now in its 35th year.

He is listed in the Best Lawyers in America, for Nonprofit Organizations/Charities Law. He earned his JD and LLM degrees at the George Washington University, his SJD degree at the University of Kansas, and his BA degree at the University of Michigan. He is a member of the bars of the District of Columbia and the state of Missouri. See

“The author methodically helps readers articulate what precisely they want to accomplish and carefully weigh the options most conducive to the achievement of those goals . . . both remarkably concise and exhaustive—it’s difficult to imagine a more comprehensive introduction to the topic of comparable brevity.” Kirkus Reviews

Published: 2018
Page Count: 144