Thursday, May 22, 2008
Attorney Karl Emerson (Montgomery, McCracken Walker & Rhoads, LLP) published an article on increasing state and federal scrutiny of tax exempt charitable hospitals in Pittsburgh Journal of Environmental and Public Health Law. The article is entitled "COMMENTS ON THE ROLE OF THE MODERN CHARITABLE HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS" Here is an excerpt:
Hospitals and their foundations, just like other types of charitable organizations, are increasingly having their operations scrutinized much more closely by not just state enforcement authorities—but also by the IRS, the media, and the public at large. As a result, they need to know what the applicable state and federal statutes require and, equally important, the types of conduct these statutes prohibit. In this age of significantly heightened governmental and media scrutiny, hospitals and their foundations, like all other charitable organizations, need to ensure they are operating in conformity with all applicable state and federal laws. If they do not, they can be held accountable by the federal government through the IRS which has recently begun to significantly ramp up its enforcement efforts; by the various states through their attorneys general, district attorneys, and/or secretaries of state; by private watchdog organizations such as the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance; by an ever-vigilant media always eager to expose irregularities and fraud in the sector; and lastly, but in many cases most importantly, by the donating public that can, and does, stop its support of organizations that violate its trust.