Exit Agreements for Nonprofit CEOs: A Guide for Boards and Executives

This article is intended to offer readers a context and a set of choices in considering whether an exit agreement is needed and, if so, what might be included. What we offer here is a framework for:

  • Distinguishing between different types of agreements, and when and how they are best used (e.g., an employment agreement, a separation agreement, or an exit agreement);
  • Sharing case experience about the presenting situations where an exit agreement may be appropriate and the key considerations in exploring and shaping such an agreement;
  • Understanding the legal and risk management questions that require attention in considering an exit agreement; and
  • Providing an introduction to additional resources that may be helpful in considering this topic.

Whatever elements you end up putting in your exit agreement, we must stress the importance of seeking legal review of any draft exit agreement by an attorney who is licensed in the state where your nonprofit is located and also well versed in nonprofit law and IRS regulations.