August 5, 2011
Colleges and universities represent one of the largest nonprofit sectors in the country. Add to the scenario coaches with multimillion dollar contracts, alumni and fans with passion and fervor for their favorite schools and teams, a multitude of unrelated businesses, and the result is increased scrutiny by the IRS and Congress. That leaves colleges and universities functioning in an increasingly complex, challenging and sometimes mysterious law environment.

As students head back to campus this fall, Polsinelli lawyers have co-authored a book on the nonprofit issues facing the nation’s higher learning institutions. Lawyers Bruce R. Hopkins, Virginia C. Gross and Thomas J. Schenkelberg collaborated on the book Nonprofit Law for Colleges and Universities. The publisher, Wiley, calls it “an essential, practical guide, written in easy-to-understand English.”

“Colleges and universities are under intense scrutiny by the IRS and Congress,” said Hopkins, who is considered a leading authority on nonprofit law. “It is deeply rewarding to be able to assist individuals who devote their lives to higher learning. The laws governing nonprofits are complex and ever-changing.”
The book covers every “hot issue” in nonprofit law today that directly involves institutions of higher education, both public and private. They include:
  • What are the federal tax law rules concerning maintenance of tax exemption by private colleges and universities? 
  • What is the role of the governing board of a college or university? 
  • Is a college or university allowed to pay revenue-based compensation? 
  • Will the conduct of one or more business by a college or university jeopardize the tax-exempt status of the institution or subject it to taxes? 
  • What charitable deductions are available in the higher education context?

Polsinelli is one of the nation’s leading providers of legal services to nonprofit organizations. The Nonprofit Organizations practice group consists of more than a dozen attorneys in Kansas City, Overland Park and St. Louis who are recognized leaders in their field.

“The publication of this book further demonstrates our lawyers’ dedication to the industry in which they serve,” said Polsinelli Chairman Russ Welsh. “We've made a commitment to grow the nonprofit law practice, particularly in the area of higher education, as the firm recognizes the need for our services and sees the value these institutions provide to the community.”