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Is the Charity Legitimate? Here's One Way To Tell

Question: How do I know if a charity or fundraiser is legitimate? Answer: Illinois law requires most charitable organizations and fund-raisers to register each year with the Office of the Illinois Attorney General. Consumers can check the Attorney General's Website to learn about an organization's income, expenses, programs and administration. Illinois law also requires charities to disclose - if they are asked - what percentage of a contribution will directly aid the people the charity serves and what percentage goes for salaries and other expenses.       For more information about Illinois law, visit If you have a legal question, send it to   Illinois Law Now is a series of newspaper and internet posts prepared by the Illinois State Bar Association that address legal issues of interest to the public. For additional information about the law, visit

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