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Starting a Nonprofit in Maryland: Document Requirements

How to Start a Non-Profit Organization in Maryland


Starting a nonprofit in Maryland is easier than you think! Completing Maryland’s 501(c)(3) application is one of the first steps toward pursuing your nonprofit goals in the state. While nonprofit registration isn’t difficult, the process can get confusing. Maryland is a great location for a charitable startup, and when you work with BryteBridge Nonprofit Solutions, we can walk you through everything you’ll need to know.

Give us a call to learn more about how we can help you start your nonprofit in Maryland quickly and correctly. Our experienced consultants will help prepare you for making a positive impact in your community.



Articles of Incorporation

Business Entity Search



Average Processing Time

7-10 business days

Electronic Filing?


Charity Registration

State Requirement?


Charity Registration Search


$0-300, depending on revenue

Renewal Requirement?


990 EZ Requirement?


Annual Report

State Requirement?



Annually, April 15th (2-month extension available



Other Exemptions

State Income Tax

Must file – $0

Sales Tax Exemption

Must file – $0

Tax Returns

All organizations (except those classified as churches) are required to file an annual 990 form (990N, 990EZ, 990 or 990PF) to be exempt from Income Tax.

The 990 return is due on the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of the organization’s fiscal year.

Failure to file for 3 consecutive years could cause your organization lose tax-exempt status.

Learn How to Start a Non-Profit Organization in Maryland with BryteBridge

In order to start a nonprofit in Maryland, you first need to draft articles of incorporation. When incorporating, you’ll have to choose from one of the state’s three types of nonprofit corporations:

  • Religious corporation
  • Tax-exempt nonstock corporation
  • Nonstock corporation

A religious corporation is only for religious congregations that will be filing for tax-exempt status.

A nonstock corporation, which appears in some other states as well, like Virginia, is a business that cannot be split into stocks or shares, and cannot earn dividends for the founder or investors. It’s the Maryland nonprofit registration of choice for one or more people working for the common good who will not be filing for tax-exempt status.

If you intend to file for tax exemption and you’re not a religious corporation, then you’ll select a tax-exempt nonstock corporation. It’s the same as a regular nonstock corporation, except it allows you to become a tax-exempt 501(c)(3).

Filing Maryland Nonprofit Articles Of Incorporation

If you’ve done charitable work in other states and you’re ready to expand by starting a nonprofit in Maryland, you’ll notice that the cost of a Maryland’s nonprofit registration is more expensive than other states.

 It’s a minimum of $120, not including extra fees if you’re also submitting Maryland’s 501(c)(3), 501(c)(4), or 501(c)(6) application and an expediting fee if you want to file online, by fax, in person, or if you just want the process to happen in under 10 weeks. All in all, the total cost can be upwards of $225.

While it may seem intimidating to start a nonprofit in this state, you’d be in an ideal location to reach the donors with the funds needed to support your cause.

On your own, figuring out how to start your nonprofit organization in Maryland can feel overwhelming! That’s where BryteBridge Nonprofit can help. Our experts have assisted 30k+ people start and scale up their organizations. With our affordable services and easy payment options, we can help you, too.

At BryteBridge, we don’t just tell you what to do, we help you get it done. Whether you’re currently in Maryland or another state, schedule a consultation with us and get ready to start your nonprofit!

Frequently Asked Questions About How to Start a Non-Profit Organization in Maryland

The first task you have to tackle is applying for tax-exempt status. Once you’ve received your 501(c)(3) status, you’ll need to submit your articles of incorporation and 501(c)(3) application to the State of Maryland to officially form your organization. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions! Our team at BryteBridge Nonprofit Solutions can guide you through every step of the requirements.

Maryland’s nonprofit registration is available for entrepreneurial startups interested in serving a diverse selection of community needs. You won’t need to look far to find opportunities in local and state government, health services, training and education, arts and culture, elder rights, veterans’ services, animal welfare, and many more. 

Currently, the State of Maryland lists over 32,000 nonprofit organizations that employ nearly 263,000 individuals. In addition, Maryland’s median income is the second highest in the United States and over 40 percent of the population has a bachelor’s degree or higher.

The State of Maryland can be a great place to launch your 501(c)(3) nonprofit start-up! If you’re a committed entrepreneur who wants to create meaningful social change, the experienced consultants at BryteBridge can help! The information and links will get you started.

When you’re putting together your organization’s business and strategic plans, you’ll need to keep in mind that Maryland requires filing annual reports to maintain tax-exempt status. Typically, you’ll need to verify contact information, provide your Board members’ list, and details about the registered agent. Local municipality or state compliance regulations may also request employee data and sales tax exemption forms to maintain your organization’s operating license.

The impact created by Maryland’s nonprofits is impressive. We encourage you to take a look at BryteBridge’s Nonprofit Education Center and read our testimonials page to be inspired by the stories of nonprofit entrepreneurs around the country. Contact us when you want more information. We’re here to provide assistance and professional advice at any time.

Launch Your Nonprofit Today with BryteBridge Nonprofit Solutions

When you collaborate with the experts at BryteBridge Nonprofit Solutions, starting a nonprofit in Maryland can be much easier than it appears. Because of our deep knowledge of regulatory guidelines, you’ll have all the tools you need to maintain compliance and bring lasting change to communities. Learn more about our nonprofit startup solutions.