Nonprofit Revenue Recognition

Receiving Donations from Network for Good

CPAs & Advisors

Michael Evrard
Michael Evrard CPA Principal CPAs & Advisors

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Although Network for Good (NFG) has been established for several years, recently the nonprofit community has seen the popularity of the online service rise. If you received a check from Network for Good unexpectedly, you probably had several questions. Why am I getting this money? Who did it come from? Is there a catch if I cash the check? Is the check legitimate? For those of you asking these questions, here is likely what happened.

NFG has several products and subscriptions, including a means for donors to remit contributions to nonprofit organizations. Donors can go online to the NFG website, search for any nonprofit organization that is in the GuideStar database, and set up a one-time or recurring donation. NFG then collects the money from the donor and remits all funds, less a service fee, to the nonprofit organization once per month. The donor has the option to pay the service fee in addition to the donation, to allow the organization to receive the full intended amount.

If the organization wishes, they can sign up for direct deposit on the website to have donations placed directly into their bank account. The organization will receive donor information and amounts given, unless the donor has chosen to remain anonymous.

While the scenario above sounds convenient for both the nonprofit organization and the donor, there are pros and cons to utilizing this service. We caution organizations that the Terms and Conditions, as of the time of this publication, contain several provisions the organization should be aware of before cashing a check.

  • First, it appears that NFG considers any organizations that have cashed checks remitted to them by NFG to have, by default, agreed to the terms and conditions or Giving Agreement. The Agreement acknowledges that donors officially give to the Network for Good’s Donor Advised Fund,
  • NFG has full legal control over this donation, and NFG re-grants the money to nonprofit organizations.
  • Also, the Agreement grants NFG the authority to collect funds on your behalf and acknowledges that they may re-grant these funds if you have not cashed a check within six months or you are currently not in good standing with the Internal Revenue Service.
  • It also states that donor information is jointly owned by NFG and the nonprofit organization and that donations are not refundable to the donor and cannot be canceled.

You may find this service to be very beneficial to your organization, and may even wish to set up your organization’s page on their website or utilize other services. It is recommended that nonprofit organizations carefully read these Terms and Conditions and become familiar with the donation process before cashing any checks or utilizing other services.

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