About Independent Collectives

An Independent Collective holds money for itself in its own bank account (instead of joining a Fiscal Host to hold money on its behalf).

Open Collective does not hold money for Independent Collectives—the funds stay in your own bank account and it's up to you to manage them.

While OC offers some bookkeeping tools and useful ways to process payments, It's not fully-fledged accounting software and does not automatically sync all activity with your bank account. It's up to you to handle your own accounting, banking, and money movements. Open Collective is a virtual ledger, not an actual bank account.


Should I be an Independent Collective?

Being an Independent Collective is a good option if:

  • You have a personal or company bank account you can use to hold your Collective's money.

  • You only intend to have a single Collective associated with this bank account (if you'd like to manage multiple Collectives using your own entity, create a Fiscal Host instead).

  • You can take responsibility for accounting, taxes, liability, payments, and financial admin for your Collective.

  • You can set up a Stripe, Paypal, and/or Wise account connected to this bank account (not required but highly recommended so you can use Open Collective's financial automation features).

If the above doesn't describe your situation, join a Fiscal Host instead.

What are the benefits?

  • You hold the money in your own bank account and have complete control of it.

  • You can set your own policies about the activities of your Collective.

  • You do not need to pay any fees to use the platform.

What are the challenges?

  • You have to manage more admin tasks.

  • You hold legal liability.

  • You are responsible for accounting and taxes.

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Ⓒ Open Collective 2024