Nonprofit Accounting & Advisory Services
At CJBS, we’ve helped nonprofits tackle their unique operational, financial, and regulatory challenges since 1994. Our goal: to support you, so you can focus on your mission and serve the community. Our expert team offers nonprofit accounting, audit, tax, and consulting services to allow you to remain compliant with strict IRS industry regulations, meet your high level of fiduciary responsibility, prevent fraud, and more.
Our wide variety of nonprofit accounting clients includes social, education, and religious organizations, as well as government entities. By tailoring our nonprofit accounting and advisory services to your organization, CJBS helps you maximize your resources, so you can improve — and sustain — your ability to serve the community.
Nonprofit Accounting & Advisory Services
Audit & Assurance
Our knowledgeable nonprofit CPA team offers a full range of assurance services, including compilations, reviews, and audits. Most, but not all, 501(c)(3) organizations in Illinois are required to be audited. Many nonprofits, often opt to have regular audits in order to build transparency and trust. Audits may also be required in the event that your organization received government grants.
Our nonprofit audit team works with as little disruption to your organization as possible to provide the third-party assessment you need, reviewing your organization’s financial records and internal control systems. A full audit — the most rigorous assurance service — ensures that your organization’s financial statements are properly and accurately stated and in accordance with the appropriate accounting principles.
As a value-add to our nonprofit assurance work, CJBS offers operations improvement consulting. We identify any gaps in your internal controls and accounting systems, including small holes that can add up to big losses, and make recommendations for implementing more efficient and effective processes.
From collaborating with your nonprofit’s legal team, when appropriate, to advising you on whether to include board members in the internal controls process, the CJBS team works alongside you as a trusted advisor. The CJBS team also provides our recommendation of best practices to ensure a concise and complete control environment.
Whether you need help with nonprofit bookkeeping or need higher-end fractional (part-time or contract) CFO or controller services, the CJBS team can help you make strategic business decisions, manage your finances, and tell your nonprofit’s “story” to stakeholders.
Accounting & Financial Services
Many people mistakenly think that nonprofits don’t actually make a profit. At CJBS, we understand how vital it is for your nonprofit to make money, which you can then reinvest in your mission-based business.
As a nonprofit, you need impeccable accounting for a variety of reasons, including to raise funds, present financial information to your board members and other stakeholders, avoid trouble with the IRS, and facilitate audits. CJBS’s white-glove nonprofit bookkeeping and CPA services ensure that your books are always timely and clean.
Tax Preparation & Planning
As a nonprofit, you face higher IRS scrutiny and more stringent rules and regulations than most industries. What’s more, your tax returns are available to the public. To avoid problems like missing out on grant opportunities, facing reputational damage, or even losing your tax-exempt status, it’s essential that your IRS Form 990 is completed properly. CJBS has more than 30 years of expertise in nonprofit tax preparation, and we ensure that you comply with all standards and remain in good standing. Beyond compliance, we work collaboratively with your nonprofit on tax planning, on an interim and annual basis, so you can build your assets and serve the community for generations to come. The following are some of the key elements that should be considered:
- Engaging our tax team to help establish and safeguard the tax-exempt status of the organization
- Ensuring that information returns are prepared to highlight the organizations missions and accomplishments
- Minimizing the exposure to liabilities from the issues such as unrelated business taxable income (UBTI) and lobbying expenditures
- Providing high-quality assurance services relating to financial reporting and grant compliance
Working with our knowledgeable nonprofit accounting and advisory team allows you to confidently focus on your mission. Our team, which is peer-reviewed at the highest level, supports your mission by taking a hands-on approach: actively listening to your goals, asking the right questions, analyzing data and providing relevant financial reports, and offering straightforward, practical recommendations to help you grow.
Your Nonprofit Accounting Expert
A senior partner on CJBS’s auditing team, Andrew Lotts has more than 30 years of experience in nonprofit audit, accounting, tax, and consulting matters. He enjoys collaborating with nonprofits to solve their biggest challenges and provide lasting value, which in turn serves the greater community. Outside the office, Andrew serves as a volunteer treasurer at a nonprofit in Chicago.
General Nonprofit FAQs
When are nonprofits required to have an audit?
Just because you’re a nonprofit, you’re not automatically required to have an audit. For example, religious organizations are exempt from audits because they don’t pay taxes — although many elect to be audited as part of their bylaws, in an effort to be transparent.
Do all nonprofit organizations need to make their finances public?
Yes. All nonprofits are required to make their financial statements available to the public. All 501(c)(3) nonprofits are required to submit Form 990 to the IRS annually. Form 990 includes a nonprofit’s figures for revenue, expenses, assets, and liabilities. A nonprofit’s finances can also be found on websites like GuideStar and Candid.org.
Do nonprofits need internal controls?
Yes, frequently our nfp clients use volunteers to fill positions, thus a comprehensive set of internal controls are necessary to ensure no fraud occurs. Without internal controls in place a nfp could be susceptible to fraud.
Nonprofit News & Updates
Stay current on the latest Nonprofit industry developments and find out what it means for you and your business.