Raffles

A raffle is defined as a means of raising money by selling numbered tickets, one or some of which are subsequently drawn at random, the holder or holders of such tickets winning a prize.

If you design a raffle to include with your event, make sure you are following the rules and regulations applicable to your raffle. Raffles are governed by state law, and those laws vary greatly from state to state. Please be sure you understand the laws in your area, particularly if your campaign will be accessible across multiple states. And make sure you have any needed disclaimers or code in place, just in case anyone from a different country, state, or county wants to participate, but legally cannot.
For more information on the rules and regulations of charitable gaming, please review this article by the National Council of Nonprofits:https://www.councilofnonprofits.org/tools-resources/games-of-chance-raffles-and-charity-auctions

A small sample of the differing state laws include:

  • In California, a nonprofit organization must register with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts before the raffle.
  • In the state of New York, there are three categories of Raffle Tickets, each with their own rules and regulations.
  • In Pennsylvania, and other states, proceeds from games of chance have to be kept in a special bank account.
  • North Carolina law states: "None of the net proceeds of the raffle may be used to pay any person to conduct the raffle, or to rent a building where the tickets are received or sold or the drawing is conducted."

So make sure to check and follow your applicable laws before attempting a raffle.

The onus and responsibility to follow the law is, of course, on you as the non-profit organization. MobileCause cannot and does not provide legal advice, and is not liable for any failure of your organization to follow applicable rules and regulations.