Legal definition of charitable organization
Business Formation Legal Terminology

charitable organization

1
"Charitable organization" Is a business entity organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, educational, medical, or literary purposes, testing for public safety, prevention of cruelty to children or animals, family counseling, or promotion of amateur sports competition. The main purpose of a charitable organization is to raise money for a good cause for the public at large, rather than an individual.

According to the Internal Revenue Code a nonprofit corporation, trust, community chest, fund, foundation, or other entity that is exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 if the entity is organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, educational, or literary purposes, testing for public safety, prevention of cruelty to children or animals, or promotion of amateur sports competition.
2
The term charitable is used in its generally accepted legal sense and includes relief of the poor, the distressed, or the underprivileged; advancement of religion; advancement of education or science; erecting or maintaining public buildings, monuments, or works; lessening the burdens of government; lessening neighborhood tensions; eliminating prejudice and discrimination; defending human and civil rights secured by law; and combating community deterioration and juvenile delinquency.

The legal definition of charitable organization (and of Charity) varies according to the country and in some instances the region of the country in which the charitable organization operates. The regulation, tax treatment, and the way in which charity law affects charitable organizations also varies.
Source: Wikipedia - The Free Encyclopedia. website. license
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