In order to start a non-profit organization, individuals must first have a business plan. The non-profit must have a specific goal and a target group or entity which they wish to assist. For example, a non-profit may wish to help the homeless or help the unemployed find jobs.
The non-profit organization must also have a plan to pay employees or to strictly use volunteers. The non-profit organization must also have a name which is not currently being utilized by any other organization.
These standard rules apply for most non-profits. However, there are more specific rules in some jurisdictions. For example, a non-profit must utilize at least seventy percent of income towards their goals, such as helping the homeless. Meanwhile, other jurisdictions have less strict rules and regulations.