Licensing Requirements

Generally, any organization or person that intends to directly solicit contributions in North Carolina, or intends to hire a person or business to solicit contributions in North Carolina, must first obtain an appropriate license from CSL. Organizations must renew their licenses each year to maintain licensed status.

There are several statutory exemptions to this requirement. A person that qualifies for an exemption does not have to obtain or maintain a license.

If an organization requires a license but operates without one, that organization may be subject to administrative penalties or fines in addition to civil and/or criminal prosecution.

License Application Fees

License application fees are set by statute. Fees vary by license type, and fees for charitable organizations and sponsors are set on a sliding scale based upon contributions received per fiscal year, including a waiver of fees in some instances.

License Application Processing

By law, CSL processes all license applications within ten (10) days of the section's receipt of the application. If CSL finds a problem with a license application, it will send notice of the problem to the applicant within this ten (10) day period.

About CSL 

The Charitable Solicitation Licensing Section (CSL) transferred in January, 1999 from the Department of Health and Human Services to the Department of the Secretary of State.

CSL performs three explicit statutory duties:

  • We license certain organizations and persons that solicit North Carolina residents for charitable contributions.
  • We investigate violations of the Charitable Solicitations Act, G.S. 131F.
  • We provide information for consumer and public use concerning charitable solicitations, solicitation fraud, and related consumer information.