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Frequently Asked Questions About Charitable Organizations


My organization would like to conduct a fundraiser, how do we contact Social Services Department?

Social Services Department was dissolved in 1997 as a Department and put under the Los Angeles Police Commission, Commission Investigation Division, Charitable Services Section, located at 200 North Spring Street, Room 1513, Los Angeles, CA 90012.

My organization is a non-profit charity. How do we go about having a fundraiser?

A Notice of Intention to Solicit Contributions [PDF] needs to be completed and returned to Charitable Services Section at least 15 days prior to the beginning of your solicitation or advertisement of your fundraising activity. A Notice of Intention can be faxed or mailed to your organization.

What documents does my new charity need to submit?

The documents are (1) Corporation Articles (and Amendments), (2) Bylaws, (3) Internal Revenue Service letter of income tax exemption and (4) Franchise Tax Board (State of California) letter of income tax exemption, and (5) the Charitable Trust (CT) number issued by the State of California, Office of the Attorney General.

Is there a fee to solicit in the City of Los Angeles ?

Yes, the amount is $42.00

Who is the Person in Charge of Appeal?

The Information Card will be sent to the person named at the end of Notice of Intention as the person in charge of appeal. That name will be put on the Information Card along with a telephone in which they can be contacted regarding the appeal or event.

After I have completed the Notice of Intention, how long does it take to get my permit?

Charitable Services Section issues an Information Card. The Information Card has an identifying number and will be issued within 15 days of receipt of the Notice.

What is an Information Card?

The Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC) requires any person or organization soliciting or holding a special event in the City to obtain an Information Card from Charitable Services Section of the Los Angeles Police Commission prior to the event or appeal. The IC provides important information to the donor so they may make an educated decision whether to support that organization.

Where can I get the Los Angeles Municipal Code?

You can find the Los Angeles Municipal Code, City Charter and Rules and Code on the Los Angeles City website. www.lacity.org.

What do we do with the Information Card?

Each solicitor must possess and display upon request a copy of the Information Card to all persons solicited. Mail appeals must contain a replica of the Information Card or the information contained on the card. The Information Card must be displayed at the site of special events.

What should be done with the form Report of Results of Activity [PDF]?

The form must be completed and submitted with the signatures of two officers of the organization and filed with Charitable Services Section, Los Angeles Police Commission within 30 days after the close of the solicitation.

How can our 501(c)(3) become an Endorsed Agency?

Comply with the provisions of Section 44.15(a)(1) through (9) of the Los Angeles Municipal Code (LAMC). Submit an Application for Endorsement [PDF] to Charitable Services Section, Los Angeles Police Commission.

Is the Information Card Permit Issued by the City of Los Angeles valid in other cities and jurisdictions (Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, etc..)?

No, an Information Card Permit issued by the City of Los Angeles is only valid for the cities and /or regions under the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles Police Department

Do I need a license if my local charity wants to conduct a bingo game?

It is unlawful to conduct or play a game of bingo in the City of Los Angeles without a valid bingo license issued pursuant to Article 4.5 Bingo of the Los Angeles Municipal Code.

What are the necessary steps in order to request a charitable bingo license?

An eligible organization may apply to the Los Angeles Police Commission Charitable Services Section for a license to conduct a bingo game(s). The application shall be on forms provided by Charitable Services and shall be filed not less than 60 days before the date on which the game is to be played or the series of games is to commence. Request a bingo application by contacting Police Commission Charitable Services Sections.

Is there a bingo filing fee?

A fifty-dollar ($50) license fee shall be paid upon application for a bingo license or upon annual renewal thereof. In the event an application for license is denied, one half of the fee shall be refundable to the applicant. A bingo license shall be valid for a period of one year. An additional fee for law enforcement and public safety costs incurred by the City of Los Angeles. The feel shall be computed as follows: Each licensee shall pay a monthly fee equal to.922% (00922) of the total amount paid out in bingo prizes for that month in excess of $2,000. The above fee shall be adjusted, if necessary, in order to recover the city's administrative costs, and adopted in the same manner as provided in Section 12.37-1, 1 of the Los Angeles Municipal Code for establishing fees.

How many days of the week may a licensed charitable organization conduct bingo?

Bingo may only be conducted no more than three days per week. No bingo session shall exceed six continuous hours and any one licensee shall permit not more than one bingo session in one day.

What hours of the week may a licensed charitable organization conduct bingo?

Bingo may only be conducted between the hours of 12:00 noon and 12:00 midnight. No bingo session shall exceed six continuous hours and any one licensee shall permit not more than one bingo session in one day.

Where do I purchase my Bingo supplies?

Bingo equipment and/or supplies must be purchased by suppliers licensed to sell in the City of Los Angeles. Contact Charitable Services Section for an up to date list of suppliers.

What are the necessary steps in order to request a revised license to reflect changes in gaming location and/or bingo sessions(s)?

An officer (listed on file) needs to submit a cover letter requesting desired revision change(s) with an effective date and enclosed a revised lease or rental agreement reflecting necessary change(s).