Applying for tax-exempt status for your nonprofit organization involves several steps and requires attention to detail. By following the guidelines below, you can successfully navigate the process and obtain tax-exempt status for your organization.

  • 1. Visit the IRS website at www.irs.gov.
  • 2. Locate the “Charities & Nonprofits” section: On the homepage, scroll down to the “More Topics” section and click on “Charities & Nonprofits.” This will take you to a dedicated page with information and resources specifically for nonprofit organizations.
  • 3. Explore the “Charities & Nonprofits” page: On this page, you will find various topics related to nonprofit organizations, such as applying for tax-exempt status, annual reporting and filing, and tax information for donors. Familiarize yourself with the available resources to gain a better understanding of the process.
  • 4. Access the “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” section: On the “Charities & Nonprofits” page, click on the “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” link. This will take you to a page with detailed information on the application process, including eligibility, required forms, and application fees.
  • 5. Review the application process: The “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” page provides an overview of the steps involved in applying for tax-exempt status. These steps include determining if your organization is eligible, obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN), and completing the appropriate application form.
  • 6. Determine your organization’s eligibility: To apply for tax-exempt status, your organization must meet specific requirements outlined by the IRS. Review the “Eligibility Requirements” section on the “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” page to ensure your organization qualifies.
  • 7. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN): If your organization does not already have an EIN, you will need to obtain one before applying for tax-exempt status. On the “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” page, click on the “Employer ID Numbers” link for instructions on how to apply for an EIN.
  • 8. Complete the appropriate application form: Depending on your organization’s structure and purpose, you will need to complete either Form 1023, Form 1023-EZ, or Form 1024-A. Review the “Which Form to File” section on the “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” page to determine the correct form for your organization.
  • 9. Review application instructions and fees: Before submitting your application, review the instructions for the appropriate form and ensure you understand the application fees. The “Applying for Tax-Exempt Status” page provides links to the instructions and fee information for each form.
  • 10. Submit your application: Once you have completed the necessary steps, submit your application to the IRS. The processing time for tax-exempt status applications varies, so be prepared to wait several weeks or months for a response.

Additional resources

To apply for tax-exempt status for your nonprofit organization, you may benefit from other resources that provide valuable information and guidance. These resources include:

  • 1. Small Business Administration (SBA): The SBA provides resources and guidance for starting and managing a nonprofit organization. Their website includes information on legal structures, state-specific requirements, and tips for successful management.
  • 2. National Council of Nonprofits: This organization offers a variety of resources for nonprofit organizations, including a comprehensive guide on applying for tax-exempt status, state-specific resources, and information on compliance and reporting requirements.
  • 3. State Government Websites: Each state has its own requirements and processes for nonprofit organizations seeking tax-exempt status. Visit your state’s official government website to access information on state-specific requirements, forms, and resources.
  • 4. Grants.gov: This government website provides information on federal grants available to nonprofit organizations. While not directly related to tax-exempt status, understanding the grant application process and eligibility requirements can be beneficial for nonprofits seeking funding.

By exploring these government resources, you will gain a better understanding of the process and requirements for obtaining tax-exempt status for your nonprofit organization.

Our articles make government information more accessible. Please consult a qualified professional for financial, legal, or health advice specific to your circumstances.

We appreciate feedback from readers like you. If you want to suggest new topics or if you spot something that needs fixing, email us anytime at [email protected].