L3C Sticker

  • What is an L3C?

    A low-profit limited liability company, also known as an L3C, is a new kind of limited liability
    company (LLC) that combines the financial advantages of the traditional LLC form of
    business with the social benefits of a non-profit entity. In addition, as a variety of LLC, the
    L3C generally shields its owners from the debts of the enterprise.

    An L3C is a for-profit limited liability company which is specifically organized to further one
    or more charitable or educational purposes within the meaning of the Internal Revenue Code
    (IRC).1 L3Cs may be formed as free-standing businesses with social purposes. They may also be created by nonprofit organizations as for-profit subsidiaries with social welfare goals.

    An L3C can earn income and see its property appreciate in value, but the production of
    income or the appreciation of property cannot be a significant purpose of the company. In
    addition, L3Cs are prohibited from pursuing political or legislative purposes within the
    meaning of the IRC.

    [Excerpted from a Basic L3C Primer]
  • Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? - Published May 2010
  • Who is the L3C Entrepreneur? - UPDATE Published Fall 2012
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  • Fifty State Series - L3C and BCorp Legislation Table


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L3C Sightings...

ACT of 2011

The current economic recession has resulted in the coincidence of fewer
philanthropic dollars with greater philanthropic need. Accordingly, private foundations are looking for a way to generate a return, however modest, on their funds available for distribution.

The exception for program-related investments (PRIs) under Section 4944 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended (the "Code"), allows a non-profit to make a return on an
investment which also qualifies as a qualifying distribution under Section 4942 of the Code.

The Philanthropic Facilitation Act of 2011 would improve the ability of private foundations to use the PRI exception more efficiently and thereby would open up additional capital for investment in economically-distressed industries.

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