Frequently Asked Questions

General Information

  • What is ExpressTaxExempt?

    ExpressTaxExempt provides a quick, secure, and cost effective solution to preparing for section 501(c)(3) recognition, file your Form 990, 990-EZ, 990-N and Extension Form 8868 .

  • Why should I use ExpressTaxExempt?

    With ExpressTaxExempt you can E-File your 990-N, 990-EZ, Form 990 and 8868 forms in the most simple and easiest method possible. We have error-checks in place to make sure that you don't leave any necessary fields blank and provide live phone, chat and e-mail support for any questions you may have.

  • How do I file with ExpressTaxExempt?

    After you have created an account with us you will choose the 990 form that you need to file. The system will walk you through step by step to enter the necessary information for the form. Simply follow the on-screen prompts asking you to fill out your information. After you have transmitted your form we will e-mail you with your 990 confirmation. If for any reason your 990 is rejected by the IRS we will also send you an e-mail with further information. You can re-transmit rejected returns with ExpressTaxExempt at no additional charge.

  • What type of customer support does ExpressTaxExempt offer?

    With ExpressTaxExempt there is no additional charge for contacting our locally based support team. When you call us you get to speak with a qualified tax support specialist in our Rock Hill, South Carolina office. We also offer support via live chat along with around the clock support via e-mail.

  • What are the benefits of e-filing with ExpressTaxExempt?

    E-filing is not only faster and easier, but it's also safer. Encrypted files are shared directly and only with the IRS to ensure that your information is only being shared with the people that need to see it, and error-checks keep you from making simple errors. The IRS estimates that 24% of paper filers make simple errors while only 1% of e-filers make the same errors. E-filing is also much quicker, as we usually see returns come back from the IRS in around 15 minutes. The ExpressTaxExempt software is all online, so there's nothing to download and no paper forms to worry about. Our system will walk you through each step like an interview instead of a tax document.

  • Is it possible to manage multiple organization in one account?

    Manage all of your organizations with just one account - click the "Add Organization" icon on the Dashboard screen to add as many EINs and organization names as needed.

  • What if I want someone to review the return?

    Invite members of your organization to double-check your return before transmitting. With our "Manage Reviewers & Approvers" feature, send a secure link to those you need to review your e-file - they can even verify with electronic signatures.

  • How does the built-in audit check in your application works?

    Our internal audit check ensures you answered each question, and your amounts are balanced - any errors are pointed out for you to fix before transmitting.

  • Do I need to pay to access your software?

    ExpressTaxExempt is always free to begin e-filing - you can even complete your entire form without spending a cent. We only charge once you're ready to transmit to the IRS.

  • How long does it take to complete my Form 990? [mention for all the supported Forms]

    Completing IRS Form 990/990-EZ varies for each organization depending on how many schedules you may need to e-file along with your form. Smaller organizations can complete IRS Form 990-N (e-Postcard) within minutes because less information is required. Any exempt organization can finish Extension Form 8868 in minutes as it only requires the most basic of information.

Exempt organizations Form 990 (long form)

  • What is required on Form 990?

    Public inspection, signature, recordkeeping, rounding off to whole dollars, completing all lines, proper reporting amounts, inclusion of activities and items of disregarded entities and joint ventures, and reporting information from third parties.

  • What is the deadline for Form 990?

    The deadline for filing Form 990 is the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of the organization's fiscal year. If the organization is liquidated, dissolved, or terminated, file the return by the 15th day of the 5th month after liquidation, dissolution, or termination.

  • What are "gross receipts"?

    The total amounts the organization received from all sources during its tax year, without subtracting any costs or expenses.

  • What are the penalties for not filing?

    There is a penalty of $20 a day. Organizations with annual gross receipts exceeding $1 million are subject to a penalty of $100 for each day failure continues (with a maximum penalty for any one return of $50,000).

  • What is an "accounting period"?

    Calendar year: reporting the 2015 calendar year accounting period beginning on January 1 and ending December 31.

    Fiscal year: a 12 month interval beginning the year the form is in reference to. A fiscal year accounting period should normally coincide with the natural operating cycle of the organization.

    Short period: a period of less than 12 months, which exists when an organization first commences operations, changes its accounting period, or terminates Is there an extension for filing Form 990?

  • Why is Form 990 important?

    E-filing the IRS Form 990 is important because it reports revenue, expenses, management, and activities of your organization. Failing to file can lead to IRS penalties that can cost your organization up to thousands of dollars - failing to file for three consecutive years forfeits your exemption status.

  • Which Form 990 should I use?

    The 990 form you e-file depends on your organization's gross receipts. IRS Form 990 is for organizations with gross receipts greater than $200,000; IRS Form 990-EZ is for organizations with gross receipts less than $200,000, and IRS Form 990-N (e-Postcard) is for organizations with $50,000 or less in gross receipts.

  • What is required on Form 990?

    IRS Form 990 requires various information such as program services, revenue, expenses, supplemental financial statements, net assets, balance sheets, a list of employees, other IRS filings, and tax compliance along with governance, management, and disclosures.

  • How can I determine the accounting period for an organization?

    You can locate the end date of your organization's accounting period in the Determination Letter you received from the IRS about your exemption status. You can also find your accounting period from previous 990 forms filed by your organization. If you can't access either, we recommend contacting the IRS tax-exempt hotline 877.829.5500.

  • When can I amend my Form 990?

    You can only amend IRS Form 990 after the IRS has accepted the original return, but you have changes you still want to make. If you receive a rejected form, just make the necessary edits and re-transmit the original return.

  • Do I need to file a separate form for an amended return?

    ExpressTaxExempt allows you to make corrections to your accepted Form 990 and transmit it as an amended return. You won't have to begin over again with a separate form; however, your original return needs to be e-filed with ExpressTaxExempt to submit an amended return.

  • Are churches exempt from form 990?

    Typically churches, including integrated auxiliaries, conventions, or associations of churches, are automatically recognized as tax exempt and aren't required to apply for exemption status or retain status by annually filing 990 forms. Some tax-exempt churches with gross receipts less than $50,000 have to e-file IRS Form 990-N (e-Postcard), but the majority of churches are exempt from filing 990 forms.

  • Are Form 990 filings made public?

    The IRS requires each exempt organization to make its 990 filings available for public inspection either through a website post, formal notice, or upon request.

  • When does Form 990 need to be filed?

    You must e-file IRS Form 990 on or before the 15th day of the 5th month after your tax year period, or accounting period ends. If you need more time to e-file, transmit IRS Form 8868 for an extension.

Exempt organizations Form 990-EZ (short form)

  • Who must file Form 990-EZ?

    990-EZ is used by tax-exempt organizations, nonexempt charitable trusts, and section 527 political organizations to provide the IRS with the information required by section 6033.

  • When must Form 990-EZ be filed by?

    Unlike most other IRS Forms, the 990 Series does not have a static due date. The due date is dependent on the tax period of the organization. Form 990-EZ must be filed by the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of the organization's tax period.

  • What are Form 990-EZ schedules and attachments?

    Form 990-EZ has 8 schedules, depending what information is required. Listed below are the schedules:

    • Schedule A: Public Charity Status and Public Support
    • Schedule B: Schedule of Contributors
    • Schedule C: Political Campaign and Lobbying Activities
    • Schedule E: Schools
    • Schedule G: Supplemental Information Regarding Fundraising or Gaming Activities
    • Schedule L: Transactions with Interested Persons
    • Schedule N: Liquidation, Termination, Dissolution, or Disposition of Assets
    • Schedule O: Supplemental Information to Form 990

    Click here to know about each schedule

  • Which organizations are not required to file Form 990-EZ?

    Taxable organizations, churches, and tax-exempt organizations normally grossing less than $5,000 annually. All tax-exempt organizations should contact the IRS before deciding not to file.

  • What are the penalties for late filing?

    If an organization whose gross receipts are less than $1,000,000 for its tax year files its Form 990 after the due date (including any extensions), and the organization doesn't provide reasonable cause for filing late, the Internal Revenue Service will impose a penalty of $20 per day for each day the return is late. The maximum penalty is $10,000, or 5 percent of the organization's gross receipts, whichever is less. The penalty increases to $100 per day, up to a maximum of $50,000, for an organization whose gross receipts exceed $1,000,000.

  • What is a group return?

    A group return occurs when a parent organization is filing for its subsidiary organizations. This takes the burden of filing the Form 990-EZ from the smaller organizations and gives it to their larger overseeing organization. Subsidiary organizations should check with their parent organization before deciding not to file.

  • What if my accounting method has changed?

    Amended returns are filed whenever a Form 990-EZ has been filed with errors on it. After making the appropriate notation that the form is an amended return, simply change whatever information needs to be changed and file the return.

    Returns are filed whenever an organization is going out of business and needs to signify to the IRS that they will no longer be operating. Check the box that says "Final Return" and continue filling out the return.

  • What are the reporting requirements for organizations filing Form 990-EZ?

    Organizations filing Form 990-EZ typically have above $50,000 in gross receipts, and under $200,000 in gross receipts and under $500,000 in total assets.

  • How do I e-file for an extension?
  • Does a political organization need to file?
  • How much does it cost to e-file Form 990-EZ with ExpressTaxExempt.com?
  • How can I determine what my exempt organization's tax year is?
  • Is there any state filing for exempt organization form 990-ez?

Form 990-PF (Return of Private Foundation)

  • What is needed to file Form 990-PF?

    To file Form 990-PF, you'll need a good bit of information regarding your organization and its finances. You'll need your organization's name and EIN as it appears on the IRS records. Along with that you'll also need data like organization’s revenue and expenses, net assets, capital gains and losses for tax on investment income, charitable activities, program-related investments, and information about officers, directors, trustees, etc.

  • Are there any schedules or attachments associated with Form 990-PF?

    When filing Form 990-PF, you may need to attach Schedule B to your return. Schedule B is used to provide additional information about contributions reported on your 990-PF Form.

  • How long does it take to complete a Form 990-PF?

    Form 990-PF is a rather in-depth form, so it will take a little while to complete. It's made up of 17 multi-part sections, so you may even want to set aside time over a few days to complete your 990-PF Form. Of course, if you e-file with ExpressTaxExempt, we do everything to simplify and shorten the process as much as possible.

  • Are all private foundations required to file Form 990-PF?

    According to the IRS, Form 990-PF must be filed by all private foundations that fall in one of the following categories:

    • Exempt private foundations (section 6033(a), (b), and (c)),
    • Taxable private foundations (section 6033(d)),
    • Organizations that agree to private foundation status whose tax-exempt applications are pending on the due date for filing,
    • Organizations that claim private foundation status but haven't yet applied for tax-exempt status and whose application isn't yet untimely under section 508(a) for retroactive recognition of exemption,
    • Organizations that made an election under section 41(e)(6)(D)(iv),
    • Private Foundations making a section 507(b) termination, and
    • Section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts treated as private foundations (section 6033(d)).
  • Can I amend Form 990-PF with ExpressTaxExempt?

    Yes! ExpressTaxExempt supports e-filing for amended 990-PF Forms.

  • What are the penalties for filing Form 990-PF late??

    If an organization doesn't file Form 990-PF on time, it must attach an explanation explaining why. Unless the organization can show the late filing was due to a reasonable cause, it must pay $20 for each day ($100 per day if it's a large organization) past the deadline it was filed, not to exceed $10,000 ($50,000 for large organizations) or 5% of the gross receipts for the year.

  • If my organization's tax-exempt status is still pending, do I need to file Form 990-PF?

    Yes, if your organization's tax-exempt application is still pending when Form 990-PF is due, you're required to file an initial 990-PF Form.

  • If my organization's tax-exempt status has been revoked, do I need to file Form 990-PF?

    No, if your organization's tax-exempt status has been revoked, you must contact the IRS for the necessary steps to reinstate your status before filing Form 990-PF.

  • Can I continue a 990-PF Form I started but didn't finish?

    Yes, ExpressTaxExempt saves your progress as you go! So if you need to leave and get other things done before you transmit your 990-PF, feel free to do so.

  • Can I file Form 990 or 990-EZ instead of Form 990-PF?

    No, as Private Foundations operate slightly differently than other tax-exempt organizations, if you qualify as a Private Foundation you'll need to file Form 990-PF to make sure you've reported everything required.

  • How much does it cost to e-file Form 990-PF with ExpressTaxExempt?

Small exempt organizations Form 990-N (e-Postcard)

  • Who are principal officers?

    The current president, vice president, treasurer, assistant treasurer, chief accounting officer, or other corporate officers (such as tax officer).

  • Does my organization have to file the e-Postcard if it is a subordinate organization in a group exemption?

    If the parent organization added the subordinate organization to the parent’s group filing, you are not required to file an e-Postcard. If your parent organization failed to file and your annual gross is $50,000 or less you are still required to file an e-Postcard. You must get in contact with your parent organization to verify your standing in regards to the list of subordinate organizations for the IRS.

  • How do I file with ExpressTaxExempt?

    With ExpressTaxExempt you can E-File your 990, 990-N, 990-EZ and 8868 forms in the most simple and easiest method possible. We have error checks in place to make sure that you don't leave any necessary fields blank and provide live phone, chat and e-mail support for any questions you may have.

    Otherwise, your parent organization will have to contact the IRS and mail a request in writing for the information to be updated to:

    Internal Revenue Service
    1973 North Rulon White Blvd
    Ogden, UT 84404-5402
    ATTN: M/S 6273

  • Can an organization file an e-Postcard for a prior year?

    Yes, an organization may use ExpressTaxExempt to file for previous year returns.

  • Are there exceptions to the requirement to file Form 990-N?

    Yes, exceptions to the filing requirement include organizations that are included in a group return, as well as churches, their integrated auxiliaries and conventions or associations of churches.

  • What organizations are ineligible to file the e-Postcard?

    Any organizations that are not tax-exempt or any tax-exempt organizations with more than $50,000 in gross receipts.

  • Can I file the e-Postcard before the close of my tax year?

    No, you cannot file the e-Postcard until after the end of your tax year.

  • Why do I need to provide this information while filing Form 990-N?

    Per IRS regulations, these 8 pieces of information are required to confirm your organization's tax-exempt status.

  • When my organization attempted to file the e-Postcard, it received an error message indicating that the EIN was incorrect. What should we do?

    Contact the IRS to make sure you have all the right information for your organization, then re-submit your 990-N at no cost.

  • What should I do if another organization filed an e-Postcard using my organization's EIN?

    Contact the IRS to make sure you have all the right information for your organization, then re-submit your 990-N at no costThe best thing for you to do is to contact the IRS and they will be able to provide you with the necessary steps to take..

  • Can I file Form 990 or Form 990-EZ instead of the e-Postcard?
  • What happens if I file the e-Postcard late?

    There is no penalty if you decide to file the e-Postcard late. However, should you fail to file a return for three (3) consecutive years, the IRS will revoke your tax-exempt status.

  • Will I get a confirmation that I filed the e-Postcard?

    Yes, we will email you once the IRS accepts your e-Postcard.

  • If my information changes or I make a mistake, can I amend the e-Postcard after submitting it to the IRS?

    No, e-Postcards may not be amended.

  • The system rejected my e-Postcard. What should I do?
  • How can I determine what my exempt organization's tax year is?

    Typically organizations are calendar-year filers, but if you filed for exempt status and put a different accounting period down, you may need to contact the IRS to determine what your operating year is.

  • Can an organization have its tax-exempt status reinstated if it was revoked for failing to file for three (3) consecutive years?

Form 8868

  • How can I check the status of my extension?

    With ExpressTaxExempt, you can check the status of your extension just by logging into your account - it shows on the right side of the Dashboard screen. You'll also receive an automatic email notification when you transmit your extension followed by another notification when the IRS accepts or rejects your form.

  • Why should I provide information for signing authority?

    The IRS requires the filer to verify as an authorized person of the exempt organization e-filing the extension.

  • How much do you charge to e-file 8868?

    E-filing IRS Form 8868 with ExpressTaxExempt starts at $14.90 per extension. You can also select options for additional text or fax notifications.

  • When is the due date for Form 8868?

    You must e-file IRS Form 8868 either on or before your original IRS deadline, which is the 15th day of the 5th month after your tax period end date. E-filing after the original due date typically results in a rejected form.

  • Are there any penalties for late payment?

    If your organization owes money to the IRS, you must pay the amount by the original deadline. IRS Form 8868 only extends time to file, not time to pay. You can incur IRS penalties for paying late.

  • Does Form 8868 extend time to pay tax?

    IRS Form 8868 only extends the time you have to file a tax return. If your organization owes the IRS money, it must be paid by the original due date, or you could incur penalties.

  • What IRS forms can I apply with the 8868 extension?

    Typically, exempt organizations apply IRS Form 8868 for Form 990/990-EZ, Form 990-T, or Form 990-PF. There a few other applicable forms for the 8868 extension; however, you cannot apply it for IRS Form 990-N (e-Postcard).

Form 1120-POL (Political Organizations)

  • What information is needed to file Form 1120-POL?

    To e-file Form 1120-POL, you'll need some information about the political organization for which you're filing. You'll need to have the tax year beginning and end dates of the organization as well as its name, EIN, and address. This information should match what the IRS has on record for the organization to prevent errors on your form. You'll also need the organization's financial details, including any income, deductions, and tax data.

  • When is Form 1120-POL due?

    Form 1120-POL is due the 15th day of the fourth month following the political organization's tax year end date. For organizations that operate on a calendar tax year (January 1 through December 31), the due date is April 15 each year.

  • What are the penalties for filing Form 1120-POL late?

    If you fail to file Form 1120-POL on time, the IRS charges an additional fine equal to 5% of the tax due for each month the return is late. This amount cannot exceed 25% of the total amount of tax due. If your Form 1120-POL is filed more than 60 days late, you're required to pay $135 or the remaining tax due, whichever is smaller.

  • How can I file an extension for Form 1120-POL?

    If you don't believe you'll have enough time to file Form 1120-POL by the due date, you can apply for a 6-month extension of time to file with Form 7004. You must complete and file Form 7004 by your original deadline to be eligible for an extension.

  • Why am I required to attach schedules to Form 1120-POL?

    Certain organizations are required to complete and attach Schedule D to their Form 1120-POL return. Schedule D is used to report capital gain distributions not reported directly on Form 1120-POL, line 8. If required, you must attach Schedule D to your Form 1120-POL return for it to be considered complete by the IRS.

  • Do all political organizations need to file Form 1120-POL?

    Political organizations, whether or not they're tax-exempt, must file Form 1120-POL with the IRS if they have any political organization taxable income. Tax-exempt organizations that aren't political organizations must also file Form 1120-POL if they are treated as having political organization taxable income under section 527(f)(1).

  • How long does it take to file Form 1120-POL?

    Completing Form 1120-POL on paper can take quite a while if you don't have your data in order. Whether or not you have your info ready and waiting, e-filing with ExpressTaxExempt is much faster! Our stream-lined, Q&A style e-filing process helps you get your Form 1120-POL completed and filed with the IRS in no time.

  • Can I continue a Form 1120-POL that I started but didn't finish in my ExpressTaxExempt account?

    Yes! Our cloud-based program saves your progress as you complete the various sections of your 1120-POL Form. If you need to leave and come back, everything will be saved and you can pick back up where you left off to e-file your return.

  • Can I give access to other users to manage my 1120-POL Forms?

    Yes. Through your Account Settings, you can add multiple users and give them varying levels of access to manage the 1120-POL Forms in your ExpressTaxExempt account.

  • Can I share my 1120-POL Form with other users to review before I e-file?

    Yes. If you need to share an 1120-POL Form with another user or member of the organization before e-filing, you can share a sample PDF of the return through your ExpressTaxExempt account.

  • Can I retransmit my rejected 1120-POL Form with ExpressTaxExempt?

    Yes. If your return has been rejected, ExpressTaxExempt makes it easy to make corrections and retransmit your return. And if you e-filed your original return with us, you can submit your retransmittal absolutely free!

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Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers related to e-filing IRS Form 990-N (e-Postcard), 990-EZ, 990, 990-PF, Form 1120-POL and Extension Form 8868 with our Frequently Asked Questions.

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