Sunday, June 13, 2010

Filing Your New League Paperwork

Back in December, I posted a helpful guide to starting your own roller derby league. While that article does contain many pieces of useful information on initializing and building up the real-world side of roller derby (attracting new skaters, raising funds, finding practice space, etc.), I have subsequently gone through the process of starting a junior roller derby and I now see that there is a gaping hole in that post. Nothing ever gets done anywhere without the government sticking its nose in the middle of your business, which is annoying unless you do like me and visualize that sentence from the perspective of a proctologist. So here's a bit of helpful info from my wife Slugs Bunny on what you'll need to do to appease the paperwork gods and get your league rolling.

(Important note: This is written on the assumption that you are in the United States. If you gone through this process in another country, please send me the pertinent information for that country and I will gladly add it to this article with a shoutout!)
1) Get an EIN number from the IRS. You can do this on-line. It's free, and you get it immediately.

2) File for non-profit corporation status with your state. In TN, this was something I could do on-line. We spent $100 for this. You need the EIN from step 1.

3) Fill out form 1023 with the IRS for your exemption letter. It will cost $400 for the usage/filing fee. You will need the Non-profit status letter and the EIN from above, along with by-laws, articles of incorporation, etc. As soon as I have mine finalized, I'm happy to share these with you so you don't have to start from scratch. (Editor's Note: See below for documents.)

4) After all is said and done, you then need to pay for USARS. I believe it's $400 to cover your practice location for one year. In addition, the girls will also need to pay $40 a year and get individual USARS as well. (Editor's Note: We have since discovered it can be as little as $80 if you will not be having a bout in a given calender year, great for brand new startup leagues!)

ALSO: To open a bank account, the bank has to have the exemption letter. So, we can't open an account until the exemption letter from 1023 comes back. :-P

And to save you 34 hours of composing the needed paperwork from scratch, here are the documents that we submitted to start up our junior league (which are based on documents shared with us by the Nashville Rollergirls.  Thanks NRG! *hug*).  They are posted as web pages so you'll need to copy the text, paste into a new document and then edit the names and locations and customize the terms for your localized purposes.  Failure to edit properly may accidentally give me ownership of your league, which I will then rule with the iron fist of a cranky despotic tyrant, so proofread like crazy before submitting!


  1. Hi Mr. Spankabitch,

    Thanks for all of this great information. I'm located a few miles south of you and am working towards starting a junior derby program here. I meet with our home adult league (DDG) in the morning so they can grill the hell out of me and my wife about our sanity. I've been completely captivated by what these women of the WFTDA have started and is sweeping the world.

    I have two daughters, 10 & 12yrs old. It is my hope that we can build a youth league that imparts to the kids the kind of "Girl Power" ethos that the adult ladies have experienced.

    I look forward to talking to you and your wife in the future as we get this thing off the ground. I hope we can get rolling in time to have a youth bout next year.

    MoeT Vader

  2. I know that this is an old article but THANK YOU SO MUCH for putting it out there! We are just starting out and all of your help has given us the morale boost to keep moving forward!
    ~ Mass Jenn-o-Cide
    Wild West Wreckers
    Sheridan, WY