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IRS Presents:Ten Things Tax-Exempt Organizations Need to Know About the Oct. 15 Due Date (This is a how to on keeping your exempt status)

 

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Stacie says: This tax tip is some particularly good information from the IRS for tax exempt organizations to help them keep their exempt status.   The time period to fix your delinquent Form 990 filings for years 2007, 2008 or 2009 will expire on October 15.  That’s just a few more days.  You are encouraged to take advantage and keep your tax exempt status.

A crucial filing deadline of Oct. 15 is looming for many tax-exempt organizations that are required by law to file their Form 990 with the Internal Revenue Service or risk having their federal tax-exempt status revoked. Nonprofit organizations that are at risk can preserve their status by filing returns by Oct. 15, 2010, under a one-time relief program.

The Pension Protection Act of 2006 mandates that most tax-exempt organizations must file an annual return or submit an electronic notice, with the IRS and it also requires that any tax-exempt organization that fails to file for three consecutive years automatically loses its federal tax-exempt status.

Here are 10 facts to help nonprofit organizations maintain their tax-exempt status.

  1. Small nonprofit organizations at risk of losing their tax-exempt status because they failed to file required returns for 2007, 2008 and 2009 can preserve their status by filing returns by Oct. 15, 2010.
  2. Among the organizations that could lose their tax-exempt status are local sports associations and community support groups, volunteer fire and ambulance associations and their auxiliaries, social clubs, educational societies, veterans groups, church-affiliated groups, groups designed to assist those with special needs and a variety of others.
  3. A list of the organizations that were at-risk as of the end of July is posted at IRS.gov along with instructions on how to comply with the new law.
  4. Two types of relief are available for small exempt organizations — a filing extension for the smallest organizations required to file Form 990-N, Electronic Notice and a voluntary compliance program for small organizations eligible to file Form 990-EZ, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax.
  5. Small tax-exempt organizations with annual receipts of $25,000 or less can file an electronic notice Form 990-N also known as the e-Postcard. To file the e-Postcard go to the IRS website and supply the eight information items called for on the form.
  6. Under the voluntary compliance program, tax-exempt organizations eligible to file Form 990-EZ must file their delinquent annual information returns by Oct. 15 and pay a compliance fee.
  7. The relief is not available to larger organizations required to file the Form 990 or to private foundations that file the Form 990-PF.
  8. Organizations that have not filed the required information return by the extended Oct. 15 due date will have their tax-exempt status revoked.
  9. If an organization loses its exemption, it will have to reapply with the IRS to regain its tax-exempt status and any income received between the revocation date and renewed exemption may be taxable.
  10. Donors who contribute to at-risk organizations are protected until the final revocation list is published by the IRS.

Links:

One-Time Filing Relief for Small Organizations That Failed to File for Three Consecutive Years

Filing Relief – 990-N Filers

Filing Relief/Voluntary Compliance Program – 990-EZ Filers

IR-2010-101: Taxpayers Face Oct. 15 Deadlines: Due Dates for Extension Filers, Non-Profits Approach

YouTube Videos:

Small Tax-Exempt Orgs Revised Deadline: English

Time Is Running Out – Three Deadlines: English

IRS Patrol: Form 990 Schedules and Instructions for filing in 2010-11

The IRS has finalized the 2009 Forms 990, 990-EZ, schedules and instructions, for filing in 2010-11.  Learn about changes made to clarify and modify reporting requirements and find links to the new forms, schedules and instructions on IRS.gov.

New Form 990

The 2008 Forms 990 and 990-EZ information returns for tax-exempt organizations are now finalized, along with schedules and instructions, for filing in 2009.

WASHINGTON –– The Internal Revenue Service released the revised instructions that tax-exempt organizations will need to fill out the redesigned Form 990, which must be filed starting with tax year 2008 (filed in 2009).

Most charities and other tax-exempt organizations must file an annual informational return with the IRS to maintain their tax-exempt status. Information reported on Form 990 is made available to the public.

“These instructions are the final step in a tremendous effort to bring the Form 990 up to date and to reflect the diversity and complexity of the tax-exempt community,” said IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman. “The revised form will give the IRS and the public a much better view of how exempt organizations operate. The improved transparency provided by these changes will also benefit the tax-exempt community.”

Form 990 had previously not seen major revisions since 1979. The revised instructions and redesigned Form 990 can be found on the IRS Web site.

The revised instructions feature several new tools that make it easier to answer questions line-by-line and that facilitate uniform reporting. Input from the tax-exempt community played a major role in how the new instructions were designed.

“We were gratified by the amount of help the IRS received from the tax-exempt community through public comments to redesign the Form 990 and revise its instructions,” said Steven T. Miller, Commissioner of the Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division. “This input helped us achieve our goal of improving compliance while minimizing burden. We will now begin working with the tax-exempt sector to help organizations complete the form and prepare for the 2009 filing season.”

The IRS expects to release instructions to the 2008 Form 990-EZ, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax, in the next few weeks.

As part of the phase in of the redesigned Form 990 over a three-year transition period, many organizations not eligible to file the Form 990-EZ for 2007 will be eligible to file Form 990-EZ or Form 990 for 2008. A summary of the transition period filing requirements for Form 990, 990-EZ, and 990-N is available at [link].

Form 990 Redesigned After 30 Years

The IRS is reminding tax-exempt organization and their tax preparers, that “for the first time in 30 years, the IRS has redesigned the Form 990.”

Below is a checklist provided by the IRS to help with the preparation of the new form 990.

√ Determine whether you are eligible to file the Form 990-EZ for 2008

√ Review the redesigned 2008 Form 990 released in December 2008
√ Review the final instructions released in December 2008
√ Identify the schedules that you need to complete
√ Identify the key internal stakeholders to involve to complete the form, including finance, program leaders, fundraisers, PR/government relations, and HR
√ Assign an internal leader to coordinate 990 preparation
√ Identify your related organizations and ODTKEs (officers, directors, trustees, key employees)
√ Be prepared to answer new questions about governance, executive compensation, and insider transactions
√ Determine your overseas and joint venture activities
√ Establish or modify internal systems to prepare for filing season

A detailed explanation of the changes between the 2007 and 2008 forms is also available.

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