The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Keeping People out of Poverty while they Seek Justice

aka The Milestone Foundation   |   Buffalo, NY   |
GuideStar Charity Check

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

EIN: 81-1207829


The Milestone Foundation provides financial support to people going through litigation who are having trouble making ends meet. Lawsuits can take months or even years, and we help keep families out of poverty by providing funding so they can cover their basic living expenses during this time. We also strengthen the civil justice system by enabling individuals to see their lawsuit through to its just end, instead of them having to take whatever is offered because they are pressed for cash. When someone suffers a catastrophic injury, not only do they have to cope with the injury or tragedy, but they also have to continue to pay the bills. The Milestone Foundation supports these individuals and helps them get past the tragedy and to the next steps of their lives.

Ruling year info



John Bair

Main address

50 Fountain Plaza Suite 1300

Buffalo, NY 14202 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

The Bairs Foundation



Subject area info

Public safety

Human rights

Population served info


NTEE code info

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (I12)

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (R12)

IRS subsection

501(c)(3) Public Charity

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Tax forms



Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

We aim to help low income plaintiffs see their lawsuits through to settlement by providing non-recourse advanced with 10% simple interest. We provide an ethical alternative as the only nonprofit in an industry known for its predatory interest rates.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Supporting Plaintiffs in Need

Our program is to provide financial support to those who are going through litigation and need help covering their basic living expenses while they seek justice.

Population(s) Served

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of clients served

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Supporting Plaintiffs in Need

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Leveling the playing field in civil justice by helping low income defendants afford their essential living expenses (housing, food, transportation) as they undergo lawsuits against deep-pocketed defendants.

We provide low interest loans to as many qualified plaintiffs as possible. Philanthropy helps us grow our program. We also seek to inspire legislation protecting consumers in the space, as well as hope to inspire others to join us with similar ethical lending programs.

Every repaid advance that comes in goes right back out the door to help the next qualified plaintiff.

To date we have advanced nearly $5 million to over 600 plaintiffs and their families, ensuring that their essential needs are met.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We act on the feedback we receive, We share the feedback we received with the people we serve, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback


The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 0.07 over 6 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 3.6 over 6 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 1% over 6 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

Created in partnership with

Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $37,789 -$18,378 $40,142 $78,781 -$63,702
As % of expenses 24.3% -8.7% 37.7% 46.0% -12.6%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $37,789 -$18,378 $40,142 $78,781 -$63,702
As % of expenses 24.3% -8.7% 37.7% 46.0% -12.6%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $173,141 $192,153 $146,673 $254,679 $355,604
Total revenue, % change over prior year 95.9% 11.0% -23.7% 73.6% 39.6%
Program services revenue 89.9% 53.2% 77.9% 61.1% 77.7%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other grants and contributions 10.1% 46.8% 22.1% 38.9% 22.3%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $155,352 $210,531 $106,532 $171,085 $506,662
Total expenses, % change over prior year 44.3% 35.5% -49.4% 60.6% 196.1%
Personnel 28.5% 36.8% 35.2% 57.2% 73.1%
Professional fees 29.8% 11.0% 6.9% 3.9% 3.6%
Occupancy 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Interest 26.3% 22.7% 38.8% 22.7% 17.7%
Pass-through 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 15.4% 29.5% 19.2% 16.3% 5.5%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $155,352 $210,531 $106,532 $171,085 $506,662
One month of savings $12,946 $17,544 $8,878 $14,257 $42,222
Debt principal payment $0 $26,561 $873,261 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $168,298 $254,636 $988,671 $185,342 $548,884

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 5.8 2.6 2.2 0.0 10.8
Months of cash and investments 5.8 2.6 2.2 0.0 10.8
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 0.7 -0.6 3.4 7.6 1.1
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $75,481 $46,274 $19,185 $0 $454,378
Investments $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Receivables $835,637 $920,456 $1,089,085 $1,269,129 $1,738,331
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 99.1% 101.0% 97.3% 91.4% 97.9%
Unrestricted net assets $8,500 -$9,878 $30,264 $109,045 $45,343
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total net assets $8,500 -$9,878 $30,264 $109,045 $45,343

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization


John Bair

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

The Milestone Charitable Foundation, Inc.

Board of directors
as of 08/23/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board chair

John Bair

The Milestone Foundation

Term: 2016 -

Amy Bair

Rachel Mathews

John Abeel

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/31/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation


No data

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/01/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.