What are obligations/responsibilities a volunteer/non-profit organization desiring to have an unpaid internship position should consider?
Note: this pdf from the department of labor discusses what seem to be the legal obligations behind having a non-paying internship for a for-profit company - presumably non-profits are similar (I could not find documentation specific to non-profits).
The following six criteria must be applied when making this determination:
- The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the facilities of the employer, is similar to training which would be given in an educational environment
- The internship experience is for the benefit of the intern
- The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under close supervision of existing staff
- The employer that provides the training derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern; and on occasion its operations may actually be impeded;
- The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship; and
- The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time spent in the internship.