Should you sign up as a Company or an Individual?
There are two different options in Stripe (FundHero’s credit card processor) for your Organization(entity) Structure.
- Company (Uses EIN)
- Individual (Uses SSN)
If you are a campaign or nonprofit and have your bank account set up separately for your organization you should select company. This means that you have an EIN number and that you are not receiving personal income from your FundHero account.
Do I need an EIN?
Regardless if you plan to have official “employees,” it is always a good idea for your campaign to have its own tax entity and not be tied directly to your personal social security number. Most candidate and political committees are classified as 527 Exempt organizations by the IRS. While this classification does not mean contributions are tax-deductible (because they are not), it does mean most candidates and local political committees do not need to file annual tax returns. More details can be found on the IRS website.
Most political campaigns can get an EIN entirely online from the IRS in just a few minutes. To get your EIN, visit the IRS website.
Create a Campaign Bank Account
More important than an EIN, your campaign should have a bank account separate from your personal finances. In fact, this is a legal requirement for many campaign committees. When setting up a campaign bank account, you’ll need your EIN and likely campaign committee paperwork mentioned above. Most candidates set up a simple, no-interest free checking account at whatever bank is convenient for the candidate, treasurer, or whomever is likely to do the deposits for your campaign. Visit the FEC website for more information about creating a Bank Account
*Our lawyers also want us to let you know that we can’t give any official legal/financial advise and we highly recommend reading the linked articles to understand requirements for your campaign.
Please Note: If you have set your account up incorrectly you will have to reach out to Stripe to change it. We’ve listed Stripe resources below. Feel free to reach out to us at mail.fundhero.io and we can direct you in the right direction.