Better Business Bureau Report for
Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation

Better Business Bureau Report issued March 2014
Better Business Bureau Report expires March 2016


Does not meet one or more standards
This charity does not meet one or more of the 20 standards for Charity Accountability. Find out more...


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Charity Contact Information

Name: Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation
Address: 100 North LaSalle Street
Suite 900
  Chicago, IL 60602
Phone: 312-332-1624
Web Address: www.cvls.org
Also known as:CVLS
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Better Business Bureau Comments

Year, State Incorporated: 1972, Illinois
Affiliates: None
Stated Purpose: CVLS is an organization of nearly 3,000 volunteer attorneys who donate free legal services to thousands of low-income Chicagoans annually. Their services are free, accessible and real.

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Evaluation Conclusions

              

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation does not meet the following 2 Standards for Charity Accountability.

Standard 11: Financial Statements - Make available to all, on request, complete annual financial statements prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. When total annual gross income exceeds $500,000, these statements should be audited in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $500,000, a review by a certified public accountant is sufficient to meet this standard. For charities whose annual gross income is less than $250,000, an internally produced, complete financial statement is sufficient to meet this standard.

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation does not meet this Standard because:

  • It states it does not have audited financial statements for the past fiscal year.

Standard 12: Detailed Functional Breakdown of Expenses - Include in the financial statements a breakdown of expenses (e.g., salaries, travel, postage, etc.) that shows what portion of these expenses was allocated to program, fund raising, and administrative activities. If the charity has more than one major program category, the schedule should provide a breakdown for each category.

Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation does not meet this Standard because, in the organization's financial statements, the detailed functional breakdown of expenses:

  • Was not included. A detailed functional breakdown shows expenses by natural classification (e.g., salaries, travel, postage, etc.) and indicates what portion of these expenses was allocated to program, fund raising, and administrative activities).
In addition, the BBB of Chicago & Northern Illinois requested but did not receive complete information on the organization’s governance and oversight, effectiveness measures, finances, solicitation materials, annual report, donor privacy, and fundraising disclosures and is unable to verify the organization's compliance with the following 16Standards for Charity Accountability: 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, and 20.
Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation meets the remaining Standard for Charity Accountability. Please note that as of the date of this report 1 out of the 20Standards for Charity Accountability are not currently effective. As a result, this standard has not been applied to this evaluation.
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Programs

              

CVLS offers programs that make substantial positive impact on the lives of their clients. Neighborhood Clinics Their volunteers spend a few hours in the evening or on a weekend morning meeting clients at a neighborhood legal clinic. Referral Panels They call on volunteer attorneys to take on cases that offer clients expert services. Guardian ad litem for Minors or Disabled Adults Their pro bono attorneys represent the interests of society’s most vulnerable citizens in Probate Court. Chancery Court Access to Justice They help homeowners fighting a foreclosure case and defendants in a pending Chancery case.

For the fiscal year ended July 30, 2012, Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation's program expenses were:

  
Total Program Expenses: $
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Governance

              

Chief Executive :
Compensation*: 

Chair of the Board:
Chair's Profession / Business Affiliation:

Board Size:

Paid Staff Size:

*Compensation includes annual salary and, if applicable, benefit plans, expense accounts, and other allowances.
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Fund Raising

              

Method(s) Used:


Fund raising costs were 1% of related contributions. (Related contributions, which totaled $2,292,872, are donations received as a result of fund raising activities.)
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Tax Status

              

This organization is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. It is eligible to receive contributions deductible as charitable donations for federal income tax purposes.
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Financial

              

The following information is based on Chicago Volunteer Legal Services Foundation's IRS Form 990 for the fiscal year ended July 30, 2012.

Source of Funds  
Contributions and grants 2,292,872
Invetment income 19,627
Program service revenue
Other revenue -136,168
Total Income $2,176,331


chart



Uses of Funds as a % of Total Expenses

  Fund Raising: 1%    Other Expenses: 22%

Total income $2,176,331
Program expenses $0
Fund raising expenses 30,645
Administrative expenses 1,601,005
Other Expenses 451,971
Total expenses $2,052,976
Income in Excess of Expenses 123,355
Beginning net assets 0
Ending net assets 0
Total liabilities 145,874
Total assets $1,669,827


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An organization may change its practices at any time without notice. A copy of this report has been shared with the organization prior to publication. It is not intended to recommend or deprecate, and is furnished solely to assist you in exercising your own judgment. If the report is about a charity and states the charity meets or does not meet the BBB Standards for Charity Accountability, it reflects the results of an evaluation of information and materials provided voluntarily by the charity. The name Better Business Bureau is a registered service mark of the Council of Better Business Bureaus, Inc.

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