The Sherman & Howard Difference

Our firm serves virtually every type of nonprofit organization, including faith-based organizations, educational institutions, charitable organizations, social welfare entities, private foundations and philanthropists, corporate foundations, colleges, healthcare organizations, and amateur sports organizations. We have been representing many of our nonprofit clients for decades.  As a result, our team members possess a nuanced understanding of the issues and challenges specific to nonprofits. We know their cultures and are familiar with their calling, their language, and their goals. Relying on these insights, we create solutions to fit with our clients’ priorities.

Our Approach

Our lawyers provide comprehensive guidance for every aspect of a nonprofit’s operation, from entity selection and formation through obtaining and maintaining tax-exempt status, to governance and employment issues, regulatory compliance, and a host of other issues. We ensure that solutions in one area do not adversely impact other aspects of the organization’s operations.


We advise clients in the corporate, tax, regulatory, governance, and religious liberty arenas, regularly assisting them with:

  • Child protection policies and controversies
  • Current and deferred charitable giving
  • Data protection, transfer, and privacy strategies
  • Debt issues, finance, tax-exempt bond financing, and other loan transactions
  • Employee benefits
  • Employment law issues and volunteer liability
  • Entity formation and governance
  • First Amendment and religious accommodation
  • Fundraising
  • Government funding
  • International operations, transactions, and registrations
  • Litigation and alternative dispute resolution proceedings
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Partnerships, joint ventures, cooperatives, commercial co-ventures, and other strategic alliances
  • Publishing and media activities
  • Real estate acquisitions, mortgages, leases, and environmental compliance
  • Regulatory compliance and reporting issues
  • Reorganizations, dissolutions, restructuring, and bankruptcy
  • Tax-exempt status issues and planning
  • Trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual property matters, including licensing


  • Filed amicus briefs on behalf of more than 40 national religious organization clients before the U.S. Supreme Court.
  • Advised a number of church denominational bodies and other church organizations, including The Christian and Missionary Alliance and ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians, on church property matters.
  • Successfully challenged numerous erroneous interpretations by the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service of various religious worker visa requirements and submitted extensive comments on behalf of a broad coalition of religious organizations regarding proposed regulations that would make it more difficult to obtain religious worker visas.
  • Advised on the formation and organization of affiliations of community healthcare organizations to achieve economies of scale necessary to compete on a regional or national level.
  • Advised on the acquisition by a private non-profit college of an art museum with assets valued in excess of $100,000,000.
  • Led the internal investigation of a multi billion dollar private foundation to review allegations of self-dealing.
  • Advised on the sale of a nonprofit, taxable automobile club with net assets of approximately $50,000,000.
  • Advised on the sale of a community blood bank with annual revenues of approximately $50,000,000.