Mission: Compassion & Choices works to improve care and expand choice at the end of life. Our professional staff and trained volunteers help thousands of clients each year by listening without judgment to their fears and guiding their search for a peaceful, humane death. We help clients with advance directives, local service referrals and pain and symptom management. We offer information on self-determined dying when appropriate and provide emotional support through a difficult time. We employ educational training programs, media outreach and online and print publications to change healthcare practice, inform policy-makers, influence public opinion and empower individuals. Compassion & Choices devotes itself to creative legal and legislative initiatives to secure comprehensive and compassionate options at the end of life.

Compassion & Choices is a 501(c)(3) organization, with an IRS ruling year of 2005, and deductibiltiy of donations depends on various factors.

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Contact Information

  http://www.compassionandchoices.org/

 101 SW Madison St
#8009
Portland OR 97207 

  800-247-7421


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Star Rating System by Charity Navigator


Charity Navigator evaluates a nonprofit organization’s financial health including measures of stability, efficiency and sustainability. We also track accountability and transparency policies to ensure the good governance and integrity of the organization.




Exceptional

This charity's score is 94.66, earning it a 4-Star rating. Donors can "Give with Confidence" to this charity. 

This score is calculated from two sub-scores:

This score represents Form 990 data from 2020, the latest year published by the IRS.

View this organization’s historical ratings.


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Star Rated Report

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Program Expense

Program Expense Ratio

80.1%


The Program Expense Ratio is determined by Program Expenses divided by Total Expense (average of most recent three 990s).


This measure reflects the percent of its total expenses a charity spends on the programs and services it exists to deliver. Dividing a charity's average program expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Administrative Expenses

10.9%


As reported by charities on their IRS Form 990, this measure reflects what percent of its total budget a charity spends on overhead, administrative staff and associated costs, and organizational meetings. Dividing a charity's average administrative expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Expenses

8.9%


This measure reflects what a charity spends to raise money. Fundraising expenses can include campaign printing, publicity, mailing, and staffing and costs incurred in soliciting donations, memberships, and grants. Dividing a charity's average fundraising expenses by its average total functional expenses yields this percentage. We calculate the charity's average expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Liabilities to Assets Ratio

10.6%


The Liabilities to Assets Ratio is determined by Total Liabilities divided by Total Assets (most recent 990).


Part of our goal in rating the financial performance of charities is to help donors assess the financial capacity and sustainability of a charity. As do organizations in other sectors, charities must be mindful of their management of total liabilites in relation to their total assets. This ratio is an indicator of an organization’s solvency and or long term sustainability. Dividing a charity's total liabilities by its total assets yields this percentage.


Source: IRS Form 990

Fundraising Efficiency

$0.09


The amount spent to raise $1 in charitable contributions. To calculate a charity's fundraising efficiency, we divide its average fundraising expenses by the average total contributions it receives. We calculate the charity's average expenses and average contributions over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Working Capital Ratio

0.91 years


Determines how long a charity could sustain its level of spending using its net available assets, or working capital, as reported on its most recently filed Form 990. We include in a charity's working capital unrestricted and temporarily restricted net assets, and exclude permanently restricted net assets. Dividing these net available assets in the most recent year by a charity's average total expenses, yields the working capital ratio. We calculate the charity's average total expenses over its three most recent fiscal years.


Source: IRS Form 990

Program Expense Growth

15.23%


We compute the average annual growth of program expenses using the following formula: [(Yn/Y0)(1/n)]-1, where Y0 is a charity's program expenses in the first year of the interval analyzed, Yn is the charity's program expenses in the most recent year, and n is the interval of years passed between Y0 and Yn.


Source: IRS Form 990

Governance


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990 that the organization has these governance practices in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990

Governance:
Independent Voting Board Members  ... (More)
No Material Diversion of Assets ... (More)

A diversion of assets – any unauthorized conversion or use of the organization's assets other than for the organization's authorized purposes, including but not limited to embezzlement or theft – can seriously call into question a charity's financial integrity. We check the charity's last two Forms 990 to see if the charity has reported any diversion of assets. If the charity does report a diversion, then we check to see if it complied with the Form 990 instructions by describing what happened and its corrective action. This metric will be assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Full Credit: There has been no diversion of assets within the last two years.

  • Partial Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity has used Schedule O on the Form 990 to explain: the nature of the diversion, the amount of money or property involved and the corrective action taken to address the matter. In this situation, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: There has been a diversion of assets within the last two years and the charity's explanation on Schedule O is either non-existent or not sufficient. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Audited Financials Prepared by Independent Accountant ... (More)

Audited financial statements provide important information about financial accountability and accuracy. They should be prepared by an independent accountant with oversight from an audit committee. (It is not necessary that the audit committee be a separate committee. Often at smaller charities, it falls within the responsibilities of the finance committee or the executive committee.) The committee provides an important oversight layer between the management of the organization, which is responsible for the financial information reported, and the independent accountant, who reviews the financials and issues an opinion based on its findings. We check the charity's Form 990 reporting to see if it meets this criteria.

  • Full Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant with an audit oversight committee.

  • Partial Credit: The charity's audited financials were prepared by an independent accountant, but it did not have an audit oversight committee. In this case, we deduct 7 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
  • No Credit: The charity did not have its audited financials prepared by an independent accountant. In this case, we deduct 15 points from the charity's Accountability and Transparency score.
(Less)
Does Not Provide Loan(s) to or Receive Loan(s) From Related Parties ... (More)
Documents Board Meeting Minutes ... (More)
Distributes 990 to Board Before Filing ... (More)
Compensates Board ... (More)

Policies


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization has these policies in place.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Policies:
Conflict of Interest  ... (More)
Whistleblower ... (More)
Records Retention and Destruction ... (More)
CEO Compensation Process ... (More)
Donor Privacy ... (More)

Donors have expressed extreme concern about the use of their personal information by charities and the desire to have this information kept confidential. The exchanging and sale of lists for telemarketing and the mass distribution of "junk mail," among other things, can be minimized if the charity assures the privacy of its donors. Privacy policies are assigned to one of the following categories:

  • Yes: This charity has a written donor privacy policy published on its website, which states unambiguously that (1) it will not share or sell a donor's personal information with anyone else, nor send donor mailings on behalf of other organizations or (2) it will only share or sell personal information once the donor has given the charity specific permission to do so.

  • Opt-out: The charity has a written privacy policy published on its website which enables donors to tell the charity to remove their names and contact information from lists the charity shares or sells. How a donor can have themselves removed from a list differs from one charity to the next, but any and all opt-out policies require donors to take specific action to protect their privacy.
  • No: This charity either does not have a written donor privacy policy in place to protect their contributors' personal information, or the existing policy does not meet our criteria.

The privacy policy must be specific to donor information. A general website policy which references "visitor" or "user" personal information will not suffice. A policy that refers to donor information collected on the website is also not sufficient as the policy must be comprehensive and applicable to both online and offline donors. The existence of a privacy policy of any type does not prohibit the charity itself from contacting the donor for informational, educational, or solicitation purposes.

(Less)

Transparency


Charity Navigator looks to confirm on the Form 990, or for some metrics on the charity's website, that the organization makes this information easily accessible.


Sources Include: IRS Form 990 and organization's website

Transparency:
CEO Salary Listed on 990 ... (More)
Board of Directors Listed on Website ... (More)
Key Staff Listed on Website ... (More)
Audited Financial Statements on Website ... (More)
Form 990 Available on Website ... (More)

Additional Information

Unscored

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Total Revenue and Expenses

Total Revenue and Expenses

This chart displays the trend of revenue and expenses over the past several years for this organization, as reported on their IRS Form 990.

Salary of Key Persons

Presented here are this organizations key compensated staff members as identified by our analysts. This compensation data includes salary, cash bonuses and expense accounts and is displayed exactly how it is reported to the IRS. The amounts do not include nontaxable benefits, deferred compensation, or other amounts not reported on W-2. In some cases, these amounts may include compensation from related organizations. Read the IRS policies for compensation reporting



Kimberly Callinan Taylor, Chief Executive Officer

$225,423 (1.41% of Total Expenses)


Barbara Coombs Lee, Former President

$101,000 (0.63% of Total Expenses)


Source: IRS Form 990 (page 7), filing year 2020

Business Master File Data

Below are some key data points from the Exempt Organization IRS Business Master File (BMF) for this organization. Learn more about the BMF on the IRS website


Activities:

Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, etc. (BMF activity code: 320)


Foundation Status:

Organization that normally receives no more than one-third of its support from gross investment income and unrelated business income and at the same time more than one-third of its support from contributions, fees, and gross receipts related to exempt purposes.  509(a)(2) (BMF foundation code: 16)


Affiliation:

Central - the organization is a parent (group ruling) and is not a church or 501(c)(1) organization. (BMF affiliation code: 6)

Data Sources: IRS Forms 990

The Form 990 is a document that nonprofit organizations file with the IRS annually. We leverage finance and accountability data from it to form Encompass ratings. Click here to view this organization's Forms 990 on the IRS website (if any are available).

Pandemic Response

Due to the unprecedented nature of the pandemic, we give charities such as this one the opportunity to share the story of COVID's impact on them. Charities may submit their own pandemic responses through their nonprofit portal.


Compassion & Choices reported being impacted by COVID-19 in the following ways:
  • Program Delivery

  • Revenue


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's operations financially:

We saw a softening of fundraising at all levels at the beginning of the pandemic. Conversely, we saw a significant uptick in the number of people interested in and using our end-of-life planning resources. Many donors told us they would decrease or stop their giving to send funds to organizations providing direct service to individuals directly impacted by COVID-19. But we were fortunate to have some longtime supporters increase their giving knowing we were impacted by the pandemic. We are fortunate that fundraising picked up, and we will finish the fiscal year stronger than anticipated and only slightly behind last year.


How COVID-19 impacted the organization's delivery of programs:

The scourge of the COVID-19 pandemic prompted a critical focus on the difficulties of accessing and navigating the current healthcare system. In response to the pandemic, Compassion & Choices took action early, harnessing our expertise to help reinvent the way Americans receive end-of-life care. The pandemic challenged us to quickly update and disseminate information, tools and support nationwide. For example, where appropriate, we revised resources to add specifics around end-of-life planning during COVID-19. Another example of our quick response are the free webinars we offered over the last 18 months on topics ranging from navigating end-of-life care during the pandemic to a conversation about grief and loss. Our unique relationship to end-of-life care and empowerment allowed Compassion & Choices to take robust action early due to the increased demand for our existing and new resources.


How this organization adapted to changing conditions caused by COVID-19:

The pandemic heightened concerns among our terminally ill supporters about their ability to navigate their illness & dying process, and increased uncertainty among all of us about how to plan for life’s end. We took action early & adapted our programmatic work. With offices closed & staff working from home, all outreach that had previously been done in-person was done via Zoom or by phone. We increased our social media & community outreach through online channels. For the first time ever, we held a national virtual fundraising event — which allowed us to expand our reach to new audiences & educate them on our mission. We launched our Staying Stronger Together webinar series in tandem with National Healthcare Decisions Day in April, which blossomed into dozens of live national events attended by thousands of people, plus countless state virtual events addressing an array of topics, from end-of-life planning & virtual advocacy to medical aid-in-dying authorization and implementation.


Innovations the organization intends to continue permanently after the pandemic:

As the nation begins to emerge from the pandemic, Compassion & Choices anticipates increasingly being able to conduct in-person activities once again. We will couple these events with the virtual activities that thousands of our supporters took advantage of at the height of the pandemic. This hybrid approach will enable us to meet people where they are. We will harness the momentum built over the last year, as people increasingly realized the need to call for more power in their own medical treatment. We anticipate a heightened awareness around planning for life’s end that will extend for years to come.


Historical Ratings

Date PublishedForm 990 FYEOverall ScoreOverall Rating
Rating Version: 2.1
8/3/20212020 94.66
11/1/20202019 88.78
8/1/20192018 88.03
8/1/20182017 96.56
10/1/20172016 92.88
8/1/20162015 95.67
6/1/20162014 97.04
Rating Version: 2.0
10/1/20152014 96.86
10/1/20142013 98.61
7/1/20132012 98.63
6/1/20122011 96.29
9/20/20112010 90.14
Rating Version: 1.0
7/1/20112010 84.64
7/1/20102009 93.66
4/1/20092008 95.70
8/1/20082007 92.24
5/1/20072006 96.32
5/1/20062005 73.16
4/1/20052004 91.43
4/1/20042003 97.68

...   Impact & Results


This score estimates the actual impact a nonprofit has on the lives of those it serves, and determines whether it is making good use of donor resources to achieve that impact.


Impact & Results Score

Not Currently Scored

Compassion & Choices cannot currently be evaluated by our Encompass Rating Impact & Results methodology because either (A) it is eligible, but we have not yet received data; (B) we have not yet developed an algorithm to estimate its programmatic impact; (C) its programs are not direct services; or (D) it is not heavily reliant on contributions from individual donors.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that we have not yet evaluated the organization.

Learn more about Impact & Results.


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Additional Information

Unscored

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Largest Programs

Largest Programs



Compassion & Choices reported its three largest programs on its FY 2020 Form 990 as:


$5,079,417

Spent in most recent FY

39%

Percent of program expenses


PROMOTE AWARENESS AND EDUCATION RELATING TO END-OF-LIFE CHOICES THROUGH OUR WEBSITE, QUARTERLY MAGAZINE, CONVENTIONS/ CONFERENCES, PAMPHLETS AND BROCHURES, BOOKS AND VIDEOS, AND BY SPEAKING AT PUBLIC  ... (More)


$3,788,699

Spent in most recent FY

29%

Percent of program expenses


ADVOCACY FOR INDIVIDUALS THROUGH CREATIVE LEGAL AND LEGISLATIVE INITIATIVES TO SECURE COMPREHENSIVE AND COMPASSIONATE OPTIONS AT THE END OF LIFE. WE SET NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR END-OF-LIFE CARE AND ASS ... (More)


$97,182

Spent in most recent FY

0%

Percent of program expenses


PROVIDE OUR MEMBERS WITH RESOURCES TO HELP THEM AND THEIR LOVED ONES MAINTAIN CONTROL OF THE FINAL CHAPTERS OF THEIR LIVES.


...   Leadership & Adaptability


This score provides an assessment of the organization's leadership capacity, strategic thinking and planning, and ability to innovate or respond to changes in constituent demand/need or other relevant social and economic conditions to achieve the organization's mission.


Leadership & Adaptability Score

Not Currently Scored

Compassion & Choices is currently not eligible for a Leadership & Adaptability score because we have not received its L&A survey responses.

Note: The absence of a score does not indicate a positive or negative assessment, it only indicates that the organization has not yet submitted data for evaluation.


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...   Culture & Community


This score provides an assessment of the organization's engagement with the constituents it serves, a practice we term Constituent Feedback. When organizations listen to constituents, they are able to better deliver on programs and meet the needs of stakeholders. A future version of this Beacon will also assess an organization's people operations and its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) metrics.


Culture & Community Score

100

out of 100

The score earned by Compassion & Choices is a passing score.

Encompass Rating V4 provides an evaluation of an organization's Culture and Community by measuring its Constituent Feedback practices (see report below). Constituent Feedback data provides 100% of the basis for the initial evaluation of the Culture & Community Beacon.


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Culture & Community Report

100

of 100 points

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Constituent Feedback

Constituent Feedback

Full Credit


This organization reported that it is collecting feedback.


Here's how this organization is listening and learning from the people they serve:


How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Community meetings or town halls, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees


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 inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve


With whom does your organization share the feedback you got from the people you serve?

Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners


What challenges does your organization face in collecting feedback from the people you serve?

Other means


Briefly describe a recent change that your organization made in response to feedback from the people you serve.

Feedback from the people we serve lies at the heart of everything we do. For example, our latest online tools, the Dementia Values and Priorities Tool and the Dementia Decoder, were designed and built with significant input from the general population, people impacted by a dementia diagnosis and healthcare professionals. This included focus groups, advisory council meetings, and one-on-one conversations. At the programmatic level within communities across the country, we proactively collaborate with local healthcare providers and healthcare consumers to ensure we design campaigns that will authorize and implement medical aid-in-dying laws while supporting their ability to advance legislation and then access the law.



Methodology


Charity Navigator believes nonprofit organizations that engage in inclusive practices, such as collecting feedback from the people and communities they serve, may be more effective. We've partnered with GuideStar by Candid to survey organizations about their feedback practices. Nonprofit organizations can fill out the How We Listen section of their Candid profile to receive a rating.


Charity Navigator awards full credit for this Beacon to every nonprofit that is eligible for an Encompass Rating that completes the survey, in recognition of their willingness to publicly share this information with the nonprofit and philanthropic communities. This data is not evaluated for quality at this time. Validation will be added in future iterations of this Beacon.

Analysis and Research


Like the overall Encompass Rating System, the Culture & Community Beacon is designed to evolve as metrics are developed and ready for integration. Our partnership with Feedback Labs and Guidestar by Candid, and other partners including Fund for Shared Insight, GlobalGiving, and Keystone Accountability, enables us to launch the first version of this beacon with Constituent Feedback information collected on Candid's site.


Feedback practices have been shown to support better Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion outcomes, an essential area of assessment that we intend to further expand and develop in the future. Feedback Labs has documented several studies which indicate that beyond achieving organizational goals, nonprofits that are attentive and responsive to concerns and ideas raised by beneficiaries establish stronger relationships with the people they serve, promote greater equity, and empower constituents in ways that can help to ensure better long-term outcomes. You can find resources to help nonprofits improve their feedback practices here.

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