Can our group or intergroup use the WSO’s tax-exempt number?
No. Unfortunately, the Overeaters Anonymous, Inc., tax ID number is specifically for the corporation (which includes the Board of Trustees, the World Service Office, and the World Service Business Conference). If another entity were to use that ID number, it would jeopardize both OA and the other entity (the meeting group).
How do we get liability insurance for our group or service body?
The following is the WSO response to questions about liability insurance: In order to protect the autonomy of OA meeting groups and service bodies, the Board of Trustees has decided not to purchase liability insurance coverage for any entity other than Overeaters Anonymous, Inc. However, our insurance agent has provided us with information to assist groups and service boards when the need for liability insurance arises. Contact WSO for further information.
If your meeting requires a certificate of insurance for your meeting location, a member should contact the location’s insurer (agent) and request to be placed on the location’s policy as an additional insured. It is possible once the group explains about their lack of funds the agent will waive the need for any certificate of insurance. Otherwise, the cost would be much less than for a separate liability policy.
One member of the meeting may contact his/her homeowner’s insurance agent and ask for a business endorsement on their homeowner’s policy. Costs for this would also be low. However, the group is relying on the member’s continued participation.
A group can work with other groups in the intergroup to purchase a certificated policy to provide certificates of insurance for all meeting locations requiring one. Cost may be based on the number of locations requiring certificates. Fees will be charged for the premium and for issuing the certificates of insurance.
How does my group get a Tax ID in the United States?
Contact your intergroup/service board. They may have a tax ID that covers all the affiliated groups. If not, your U.S. group must apply for one with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The required form is SS-4, Application for Employer Identification Number. You can print out a form at https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fss4.pdf. You can also apply online at https://sa2.www4.irs.gov/modiein/individual/index.jsp. When asked for the type of business, select other and write in “volunteer group,” or view additional types and select community or volunteer group if applying online. The remainder of the form is straightforward.
How does my group get a Tax ID outside the United States?
You will need to consult your local government laws and regulations. Check with your region as they may have experience or can guide you to other service bodies who have gone through the process in your country.
How does my group get non-profit status?
The non-profit status of Overeaters Anonymous, Inc., covers the World Service Office, the World Service Business Conference, and the Board of Trustees. The WSO can provide a letter explaining this and stating that your group is registered with Overeaters Anonymous. Some banks may find this satisfactory; others will not. Some intergroups have their own non-profit status, which may include the affiliated groups. In general, it is not practical for a group to apply for its own non-profit status. The paperwork is challenging and usually requires the assistance of a lawyer and a CPA to complete.
How does our service body get legal status outside the United States?
You will need to consult your local government laws and regulations. Check with your OA region as they may have experience or can guide you to other Service Bodies who have gone through the process in your country.
How does our service body get tax-exempt status in the United States?
The Internal Revenue Service is the proper source for official instructions on filing for tax-exempt status. IRS publication 557, “Tax-Exempt Status for Your Organization,” and the instructions which accompany the application, FORM 1023, provide information and assistance in applying for and maintaining your tax-exempt status. Note the time restrictions for filing the application. Your state may also require a separate application for tax-exempt status. Check with your state revenue service or treasury office for applicable forms and instructions. We suggest you consult an attorney or accountant who is knowledgeable in organizational nonprofit exempt status.
What if we need insurance for an event?
The intergroup should have their liability insurance agent add events to the definition of general intergroup operations. Therefore, the event(s) would be covered under their general liability policy.
The intergroup can contact the insurer of the event location and request to be placed on the location’s policy as an additional insured.
Separate event insurance can be purchased. Costs will vary significantly, depending on the length of the event, number of attendees, and type of event. Contact a business insurance agent and request event insurance.
Intergroups requiring liability insurance to cover affiliated meetings can contact a local business insurance agent and request information and pricing for liability insurance coverage for the intergroup with certificated policies for its affiliated OA meeting groups. You can also read the section titled, “What About Insurance Requirements for a Group” in OA Handbook for Members, Groups, and Service Bodies: Recovery Opportunities.