AG Bonta Shares Proposed Regulations for Online Charitable Solicitations

  • California AG Rob Bonta released proposed regulations governing online charitable fundraising. The regulations implement California Assembly Bill 488, which provides for increased oversight of charitable fundraising on internet platforms.
  • According to the AG’s Office, the proposed regulations are intended to protect both donors and charities from fraud, deception and unfair or misleading solicitations. The proposed regulations extend existing regulations to apply to platform charities and individuals who use charitable fundraising platforms to solicit donations. Among other things, the proposed regulations require both charities and online fundraising platforms to register with and report to the California AG’s Registry of Charitable Trusts, and conspicuously disclose in solicitations that donations may be used by the recipient organization on an unrestricted basis. In addition, charities must issue tax receipts to donors and distribute received donations promptly, and fundraisers may only solicit donations for charities that have consented to solicitation and are in good standing with both California and the IRS.
  • There will be a 45-day public comment period for the new regulations, and a public hearing on the proposed regulations will be hosted virtually on July 13, 2022 at 9 AM PT. Written comments submitted online or by mail will be accepted through July 12, 2022 at 5 PM PT.