Matthew Morris

Matthew Morris

I focus my practice exclusively on advising nonprofit organizations.
  • Business Law
  • Indiana
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Claimed Lawyer ProfileOffers Video ConferencingQ&ASocial MediaResponsive Law

M.G. Morris Law focuses on one thing: helping nonprofits, their donors, and benefit corporations do more good in the world by preventing and solving their legal problems.

I grew up in the Midwest. After college I flew helicopters in the Navy for ten years before going to law school. I still serve my "one weekend a month" in Fort Worth, Texas. After law school and an appellate clerkship in Indiana, I joined an Indianapolis law firm helping employers navigate employment issues. During an unexpected one-year detour to Afghanistan, I provided advice to the Afghan government on anti-corruption efforts.

After coming home, I served for 11 years as an Assistant United States Attorney, trying cases before juries and arguing appeals. But my favorite part of being a prosecutor was building relationships with my clients, crime victims' advocates, and organizations that advocate for the powerless. After several years of thinking about ways that the legal industry can serve civil society better, I heard the question, "what would you do if you weren't afraid?"

The answer to that question, for me, was to establish a new kind of law firm. M.G. Morris Law, P.C., is a (mostly) virtual and (mostly) paperless firm. We're not small, we're agile: there is no committee that needs to approve taking on new clients or new matters. And using the newest law firm practice management technology, I can scale my efforts in ways that traditional legal practice might not. Inspired by the example of nonprofit lawyers in other states, I have adopted new billing models that move away from the billable hour model and focus on more predictable and cost-effective billing, including subscription services and flat fees, to remove barriers to both value and communication. The billable hour model rewards inefficiency (by me) and discourages communication (by you).

In our personal philanthropic life, my wife Amy and I are involved in animal rescue, blood cancer research, and disaster response.

Practice Area
    Business Law
    Business Contracts, Business Dissolution, Business Finance, Business Formation, Mergers & Acquisitions, Partnership & Shareholder Disputes
Additional Practice Area
  • Nonprofits and exempt organizations
Video Conferencing
  • FaceTime
  • Skype
  • Zoom
  • Microsoft Teams
  • Rates, Retainers and Additional Information
    Most services are offered under either a low, predictable monthly subscription for “outside general counsel” services, or flat fees for “outside counsel” services.
Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
Indiana Supreme Court
ID Number: 26510-29
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7th Circuit
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9th Circuit
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  • English: Spoken, Written
  • Spanish: Written
Professional Experience
Founder and Principal
M.G. Morris Law
- Current
I help nonprofits and their donors avoid, minimize, and respond to legal issues so that they can do more good in the world by focusing on their missions.
Assistant United States Attorney
United States Department of Justice
NATO Training Mission Afghanistan
Baker and Daniels LLP
Law clerk to the Hon. Michael S. Kanne
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor
J.D. (2006)
Honors: Cum laude
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Georgetown University
B.S.F.S. (1993) | International Politics
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A Night to Honor Service
Federal Bar Association
Professional Associations
Indiana State Bar  # 26510-29
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Articles & Publications
Treatment by Chiropractors under the Family Medical Leave Act
Indiana Employment Law Letter
Politics and Work, Part 1: Private Employers
Politics and Work, Part 2: Public Employers
Indiana Employment Law Letter
E-verify With Caution
Indiana Employment Law Letter
Hiding Amongst a Crowd and the Illegality of Deceptive Lighting
Naval Law Review
The Executive Role in Culturing Export Control Compliance
Michigan Law Review
Speaking Engagements
Use of Accomplice Witnesses in Criminal Investigations and Prosecutions, Basic Criminal Trial Advocacy Seminar
United States Department of Justice National Advocacy Center
A survey of the particular difficulties of using criminal accomplices in the investigation and trial of criminal cases.
Effect of Child Pornography Trafficking on Victims, Crimes Against Children, Teens and Women
California State Bar
Employment Document Retention Periods, Employment Records, Retention, Retrieval, and Destruction
Employment Law Institute
Use of Accomplice Witnesses in Criminal Investigations and Prosecutions, Basic Criminal Trial Advocacy Seminar
United States Department of Justice National Advocacy Center
Websites & Blogs
The Firm's Website
Legal Answers
32 Questions Answered
Q. Does a chamber of commerce have to follow Sunshine Law (posting meetings, etc) since receive monthly payments from city?
A: The answer to this question will depend on looking closely at the facts of the chamber's relationship with the city. The receipt of some payments or grants, by itself, is not the issue. The question is the relationship between the chamber and the city. Under Missouri law, the Sunshine Law applies to "quasi-public governmental bodies." Relevant to the chamber, quasi-public organizations include "any ... corporation ... organized or authorized to do business in this state under the provisions of chapter 352 ... [which] [h]as as its primary purpose to enter into contracts with public governmental bodies, or to engage primarily in activities carried out pursuant to an agreement or agreements with public governmental bodies." It is likely (but without knowing the specifics of your situation, it is not certain) that the chamber of commerce is a corporation organized under Chapter 352. So the question will be whether the chamber's primary purpose is to either "enter into contracts" with the city, or to "engage primarily in activities carried out pursuant to an agreement" with the city. If the answer to either of those is "yes," then the chamber probably has to comply with the Sunshine Laws.
Q. Can the board of directors of a Florida 617 Not for Profit Corporation vote via email or do they need unanimous consent?
A: Unfortunately, the email vote is not valid under Florida's nonprofit corporations act because there was not unanimous consent. Florida allows board action to be taken in three ways: (a) a physical (in person) meeting, (b) a meeting by electronic communication "through the use of, any means of communication by which all directors participating may simultaneously hear each other during the meeting,” unless the articles of incorporation or bylaws provide otherwise, or (c) an action by unanimous written consent. Although some states have modified their nonprofit corporation laws to permit voting by email, Florida has not. Yet. An email vote can satisfy the unanimous written consent rule, but because your directors did not obtain unanimity the organization most likely needs to call an in-person (or online) board meeting to ratify the prior election.
Q. Local Tax Exempt Organization - how should a Board of Directors be constructed? Worried about losing control of entity.
A: You ask a question that many founders of nonprofits ask. And lawyers who work with nonprofits inevitably deal with the situation that you fear: a board of directors who develop a different view of the direction to take the organization than the founder's view, resulting in strife and board factions. The most sure-fire way to avoid a board taking the organization in a different direction is to require a unanimous vote of the board of directors on certain matters. But the risk of adding that requirement is that the organization may fall into paralysis if the board cannot agree on a path forward. An alternative could be to require a large majority (short of unanimous) to take certain actions. Under that rule, you might still lose "control," but it would only happen if the rest of the board overwhelmingly disagrees with you.
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Contact & Map
M.G. Morris Law, P.C.
55 Monument Circle
Seventh Floor
Indianapolis, IN 46204
Telephone: (317) 296-4584
Monday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Tuesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Wednesday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Thursday: 8 AM - 5 PM (Today)
Friday: 8 AM - 5 PM
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed
Notice: By appointment.
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