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Wagenmaker & Oberly provides legal counsel to NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS across the nation with offices in Chicago and Charleston.

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California Takes the Lead in U.S. Data Privacy: The New Consumer Privacy Act and What Nonprofits Need to Know

Nonprofits attuned to growing legal requirements for data privacy and data security best practices are familiar with a kind of alphabet soup of acronyms:  WISP, GDPR, PII, PCI DSS, NIST, and others.  Beginning in January of 2020, an important new law and corresponding acronym will significantly alter the data privacy landscape in America.  The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) provides extensive protections and requirements for entities doing business in California.  While the law doesn’t directly target nonprofits, CCPA impacts most nonprofits’ handling of consumer data, donor information, website user identifiers, and other types of personal information. 

Accordingly, nonprofits all over the United States, as well as international nonprofits who partner with California entities, should proactively implement key components of data privacy compliance, such as through accurate online disclosures, appropriate user opt-out options, and special care in handling the information of minors.  Furthermore, nonprofits should carefully evaluate ways in which certain operations or complex corporate structuring might trigger requirements for particularly strict compliance with CCPA.  We also recommend nonprofits seriously assess the new standards for data handling under CCPA (and other data privacy regimes), even if such statutes do not appear to be expressly applicable to nonprofits organizations.  Through such proactive steps, nonprofits should be well-positioned to act on emerging opportunities related to the security and processing of personally identifiable data in their operations.  There is more to be said about each of the above recommendations, but first a bit of recent historical global context: the European Union’s (EU) predecessor cousin of CCPA:  GDPR.

NONPROFIT LAW NEWSFEED

Court holds that First Amendment does not apply to private operator of public-access channels

SCOTUS Blog  The First Amendment bars the government from restricting freedom of speech, but it does not generally apply to private actors, like corporations.

Atheist Group Decides Not to Appeal Clergy Housing Allowance Case to the U.S. Supreme Court

Nonprofit CPA  The atheist group, Freedom from Religion Foundation, that filed the federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the clergy housing allowance exclusion announced on Fr

Treasury Issues Final Regulations on Charitable Contributions and State and Local Tax Credits

U.S. Department of the Treasury  The U.S.

An IU Study Shows the Shape of US Disaster Giving

Nonprofit Quarterly  Damage from 14 natural disasters, including hurricanes and wildfires, devastated many areas of the US in 2018 to a cost of $91 billion.

Tax Perks for College Donations Would Be Slimmer Under Wyden Bill

Bloomberg Tax  A top Democrat in the Senate hopes to stop parents from making donations that could increase the chances their children get in to certain colleges.

Former Exec at Lessie Bates Davis Agency Indicted for Embezzlement

Illinois Business Journal  A Troy, Ill., man has been indicted for allegedly embezzling funds from an East St. Louis-based nonprofit.

AG Grewal Division of Consumer Affairs Announce New Donor Reporting Requirement for 501(c)(4) Organizations Other Charities

Insider NJ  Attorney General Gurbir Grewal and the Division of Consumer Affairs today announced a new rule adopted in response to the federal government’s elimination last year of a requirem

NY, NJ sue IRS for info on nonprofit-donor disclosure shift

The Associated Press  New York and New Jersey want to know how the Internal Revenue Service decided to stop requiring donor information from certain nonprofit organizations — among them big political spenders.

Committee raising questions over animal shelter fundraising

Daily World  A St. Landry Parish Finance Committee is questioning the solicitation of private funding, social media contributions and individual donations obtained by animal shelter director Staci McKnight to help operation of the parish government facility.

NRA'S FINANCES AND CHARITABLE FOUNDATION'S TAX EXEMPT STATUS UNDER INVESTIGATION BY NEW YORK ATTORNEY GENERAL

Newsweek  The finances of the National Rifle Association and its charitable foundation are under investigation by New York Attorney General Letitia James, amid allegations of internal extort

Court holds that First Amendment does not apply to private operator of public-access channels

SCOTUS Blog  The First Amendment bars the government from restricting freedom of speech, but it does not generally apply to private actors, like corporations.

Atheist Group Decides Not to Appeal Clergy Housing Allowance Case to the U.S. Supreme Court

Nonprofit CPA  The atheist group, Freedom from Religion Foundation, that filed the federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the clergy housing allowance exclusion announced on Fr