We hope that the fall season approaching is going well for all of you. We are writing to you today about a very important matter, and we thank you in advance for the 5 minutes it will take you to read this entire message.
Last Thursday evening we were contacted by Jonathan Handel, a contributing reporter for Hollywood Reporter, with information about our non-profit and corporate statuses. According to various public registries, our tax-exempt status and corporate status is being listed as "automatically revoked". We were wholly unaware of this. We have been incorporated and had no issues since 2004.
As today is a government holiday, we have had only one business day to try to contact government agencies and ascertain what the issue was, prior to a comment deadline Handel imposed, which is today. We are writing to you now slightly prematurely, as we are still researching. Our records reflect different actions in some cases, but we are sure we can rectify the issues and that our good standing will be retroactively reinstated very soon.
It appears that the likely cause is a law that changed the reporting requirements for nonprofit entities, requiring organizations to file an e-postcard, even in years where they do not meet the threshold of income to file a full tax-exempt return. Our failure to do this is a CLERICAL ERROR. We are not alone in this error, as news reports indicate that at least 275,000 small nonprofit organizations had their status automatically revoked by the IRS because of the failure to report under the new requirements.
We are surprised by this, but not concerned, and we are diligently working to resolve the issue. There was absolutely no intent to mislead anyone. In the mean time, we have removed our 501c(3) designation from the website, as well as any donor access points.
We want to assure you that all of the services you have come to expect from BizParentz, and Anne and Paula, will continue. The website that is always free and open to users will remain, our individual help will remain, but please know that donations during this time frame would not be tax deductible to the donor, and we will not be accepting them.
We want to be clear that there is no judgment of wrong doing on the part of Bizparentz, no complaints, and nothing to this beyond a clerical error and oversight on our part. We do not believe any donors have been affected. If any of our donors have additional questions or concerns, we will be happy to address them if they contact us.
Unfortunately, there is another component to this issue, that we want our Bizparentz family to fully understand: we are feeling harassed and threatened. It is no coincidence that
An Open Secret, the documentary revealing pedophiles in Hollywood, has had some positive movement in distribution this past week. In our work, we have learned to recognize predatory behavior.
The journalist that brought this to our attention, Jonathan Handel, has appeared in or written at least 8 media pieces regarding the film or the victims -- all negative. We also had a concerning, combative personal encounter with him at the premiere of the film.
This time, the initial contact was an email on Thursday evening with a barrage of questions and requests for documents, some regarding Bizparentz, some about our relationship to the film, and some about things that seem to be completely unrelated. We did not immediately respond.
One day later, Handel sent another batch of questions, some of which sounded more like legal discovery for other abuse cases than anything an ethical journalist would be interested in. The questions were odd, to say the least. We were also notified that Mr.Handel has contacted several of the people involved in the film including vulnerable survivors of sexual abuse, and other organizations we have worked with in the past.
Sunday afternoon, Mr. Handel attempted to send BizParentz $ .99 via Paypal using our email address. We don't have an active Paypal account, so we did not receive it.
It is concerning to us that his interest in fair and accurate reporting about our very small charity is being skewed by his desire to draw negativity to the film.
In short, we don't tolerate this type of behavior from a reporter. We give media interviews pretty frequently, and we respect most journalists for their professionalism and integrity. Mr. Handel does not fall into that category and we will not be intimidated by him. We have consulted our attorney and we have prevailed against those who have attacked our reputation in the past. We will update this in the coming months as we proceed.
For you, our Bizparentz family, we want to continue with the same transparency we have always operated under. So here is what we want you to know:
--We regret the clerical error we made, which apparently resulted in our change in status. We are working on it, and we are confident it will be resolved soon. It has no bearing on any of our regular activity, which is not financial in nature.
--We do not have Child Performer Services Permits because the law doesn't apply to us. We don't work with children or charge for our services. Neither Paula nor Anne have any criminal record.
--We are volunteers and do not take any salary from Bizparentz, nor have we ever done so.
--Bizparentz income for the last few years as been minimal, nowhere near the $25,000 minimum required by the IRS to file a full return.
--We have no financial relationship with
An Open Secret: not in any way. No compensation, no donations. The success of the film has no financial implication for us.
An Open Secret
is credible and we fully support the film. We hope you can see it soon! We are told that the MPAA has adjusted the rating to PG13, it got great reviews at the Raindance Film Festival in London last week, and more screenings are being scheduled around our own country. Please check the website
An Open Secret Film
for up to the minute news.
As always, we are all free to believe what we wish, and that certainly extends to interested parties in this matter. Those people who are familiar with us as individuals, know that the past few years have been challenging for both of us in separate ways, and our lives outside of BizParentz have changed significantly. We appreciate all the assistance we have received from our fellow parents and service organizations during this difficult time.
The most important message is that we are still here, and available, to families of child performers. We believe our reputation of many years stands for itself, no matter who might try to damage it by casting ridiculous and unfounded accusations towards us for their own purposes.
We are saddened if this attack on the credibility of the film, via us, is successful in raising doubt among those who should see it. We are saddened if this attack on us has a negative reflection in any way to professional child performers. We are saddened if there are attempts made to discredit the other professionals who we have worked so closely with in the past.
We would just ask you to consider the source.
We don't know when, or even if, Jonathan Handel's report will be published, but wanted to fully inform you of the status of BizParentz Foundation.
Thank you, as always, for your support and understanding,