Registering a foreign NGO in Israel
Options for opening a foreign NGO in Israel.
- The first possibility involves opening a new non-profit organization (“Amutah“) in Israel, and conducting any activity via said NGO. The rules on registering a new Amutah are very flexible, though financial turnover and donations from abroad have to be scruplously reported.
- You can also register a foreign company for the benefit of the public in Israel, for any current NGO interested in operating in Israel under its own name and \ or brand.
Information and documents needed to register a foreign NGO in Israel:
- The list of the directors in the foreign company and photocopy of their IDs / passports.
- List of the shareholders in the foreign company and photocopy of their IDs / passports (for many smaller NGOs, this is identical to the list of directors).
- List of members of the Company’s Audit Committee and photocopy of their IDs / passports.
ַָׂ(Please note that if the company does not have shareholders or directors or an audit committee, we will need a legal opinion, by an lawyer from the NGO’s country of origin, stating the local law does not require that).
- We may be able to obtain such an opinion for you, which should cost about NIS 3,000 + VAT (the exact price depends on the information required in the opinion).
- The government fee for opening a foreign company for the public benefit in Israel is 761 NIS (as of 2021).
Also, we will need the following documents in original and signed with an apostille stamp.
- Certificate of Incorporation.
- The bylaws.
- Certificate of good standing – indicating that the foreign company is active.
- A decision of the General Assembly of the Foreign Company to open the Company in Israel. This document must state the name of our firm as licensed to act on behalf of the company in Israel and receive messages for the company.
- Details of the company’s assets, including finances. If the company does not own assets, you must explicitly state this in the foreign company official document.
The above documents have to be translated into Hebrew and signed by a notary to confirm the translation.
Please note that once the application is submitted, the Registrar of Companies may require additional information of documents.
Opening an Amutah bank account
A bank account for an NGO, particularly if the founders are from abroad, is more complex than you may imagine. Particularly for an American non-profit organization in Israel, the relevant paperwork may prove daunting, as local banks prefer not to deal with FATCA reporting. We also offer help in establishing a dedicated bank account specific to the needs of your organization.
Contact non-profit law experts
The Cohen, Decker, Pex, Brosh offices in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv are at your service. If you have any queries or issues regarding Israeli non-profit law, contact us for advice or to schedule an appointment: