The bylaws are the rules the organization adopts by which to govern itself. Bylaws are not required, but they can help define the organization and its governance structure. Bylaws should also be tailored around whether your organization:
- Has members: voting members who will choose the board of directors and have voting input into the direction of the organization
- Does NOT have members: its only voting members will be its board of directors (much more common)
If questions arise as the nonprofit develops and matures, bylaws can help future staff and board members determine a course of action. Organizations that do not have bylaws must legally default to Minnesota Statute 317A, known as the Nonprofit Corporation Act.
Sample Bylaws with Members
Sample Bylaws without Members
If your organization amends its bylaws, you are NOT required to file the amended bylaws with the Minnesota Secretary of State's Office.