Nonprofit Conflict of Interest Policy Template

Creating a nonprofit conflict of interest policy is an important step in protecting the integrity of your organization. This policy should clearly define what constitutes a conflict of interest, how to avoid conflicts, and how to address them if they arise. By having a strong conflict of interest policy in place, you can help ensure that your nonprofit operates in an ethical manner, with the best interests of your mission in mind.

A conflict of interest policy is a document that outlines the rules and procedures that an organization will follow to prevent, identify, and resolve any conflicts of interest that may arise. This policy is important for nonprofits because it helps to ensure that the organization is operating in a fair and ethical manner and that the interests of the organization and its beneficiaries are being protected.

Nonprofit Conflict of Interest Policy Template

What Does it Include?

Definition of Conflict of Interest: The policy should start by defining what constitutes a conflict of interest. This definition should be broad enough to cover any situation in which a person’s personal interests could potentially interfere with their duties to the nonprofit. For example, a conflict of interest could exist if a board member has a financial interest in a company that does business with the nonprofit.

Identification and Disclosure of Conflicts of Interest: The policy should also include procedures for identifying and disclosing conflicts of interest. This may involve requiring board members and staff to complete conflict of interest disclosures on a regular basis. The policy should also specify who is responsible for reviewing these disclosures and taking action to address any potential conflicts of interest.

Steps to Avoid and Address Conflicts of Interest: The policy should outline the steps that the nonprofit will take to avoid and address conflicts of interest. This may involve recusing individuals from decision-making processes, putting in place safeguards to prevent conflicts of interest from arising, and providing training to board members and staff on how to identify and avoid conflicts of interest.

Conflict of Interest in Practice

Real-Life Nonprofit Conflict of Interest Scenarios: Conflicts of interest can arise in a variety of situations in the nonprofit sector. For example, a board member may have a financial interest in a company that does business with the nonprofit, a staff member may be related to a client or beneficiary of the nonprofit, or a volunteer may have a personal interest in a particular program or project. These scenarios illustrate the importance of having a strong conflict of interest policy in place.

Nonprofit Conflict of Interest Policy Template: To help you get started, we have created a nonprofit conflict of interest policy template that you can adapt for your own organization. This policy includes sections on the definition of conflict of interest, identification and disclosure of conflicts of interest, steps to avoid and address conflicts of interest, and enforcement of the policy.

Conclusion

A strong conflict of interest policy is an essential tool for any nonprofit organization. By clearly defining what constitutes a conflict of interest, how to avoid conflicts, and how to address them if they arise, you can help ensure that your organization operates in an ethical manner and that the interests of your mission are upheld.

Creating a conflict of interest policy is an important first step in protecting the integrity of your nonprofit. By having a clear policy in place, you can help avoid potential conflicts of interest and ensure that your organization operates in an ethical and transparent manner.

FAQs

Who should have access to the nonprofit conflict of interest policy?

All members of the board of directors, staff, and volunteers should have access to the nonprofit conflict of interest policy. The policy should be regularly reviewed and updated to ensure that it is effective in preventing and addressing conflicts of interest.

What if a conflict of interest arises?

If a conflict of interest arises, the individual involved should immediately disclose the conflict to the appropriate person or body, as specified in the conflict of interest policy. The organization should then take steps to address the conflict, which may involve recusing the individual from decision-making processes, putting in place safeguards to prevent the conflict from interfering with the organization’s operations, or terminating the individual’s relationship with the organization.

What are the benefits of having a nonprofit conflict of interest policy?

Having a conflict of interest policy can help to protect the integrity of the organization, ensure that decisions are made in the best interests of the organization and its beneficiaries, and avoid potential legal and financial liability.