Do you need an attorney or CPA to file for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status? There are three ways to go about obtaining your 501(c)(3).
One, do it yourself. If you are someone who does your own income taxes, then you can probably handle all the paperwork that becoming a nonprofit entails. The problem is, there are several steps where it is easy to make a mistake. What ensues is a time-consuming correspondence with the IRS, and getting approval may be seriously delayed.
Two, hire a consultant who specializes in helping groups obtain their nonprofit 501(c)(3) status. This is the most economical and efficient way to do it.
Third, hire an attorney or CPA to prepare the documents. This is usually not a wise choice, because for most attorneys and CPAs, nonprofit documents are just one of many areas of their practice, and they are apt to make mistakes in the process. They also charge considerably more than most consultants.