What Nonprofits need to know about IRS Form 990?

- Updated April 18, 2020 - 12.00 PM - Admin, ExpressTaxExempt

IRS Form 990 is an informational tax form that most Nonprofits and tax-exempt organizations must file annually. The form provides the IRS information of the organization's activities, governance, and detailed financial information.

Nonprofit organizations must provide an overview of the accomplishments in the previous year to justify maintaining its tax-exempt status. From the collected information, the IRS ensures that such organizations continue to qualify for tax exemption status.

Nonprofits Organizations must make the Form 990 return available to the public. With the information available in the public domain, it makes it easier for donors to locate and evaluate the best charities to make donations and provide financial assistance.

1. What is the Purpose of IRS Form 990?

Form 990 is an annual information return filed by the Nonprofits and Tax-Exempt organizations to provide the information required by section 6033.

2. Who must file Form 990?

Tax-exempt organizations, nonexempt charitable trusts, and section 527 political organizations with gross receipts higher than or equal to $200,000 and total assets higher than or equal to $500,000 must file Form 990.

3. When is the deadline to file 990?

Nonprofits & Tax-Exempt organizations must file the 990 by the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of their tax year.

If your organization operates under a Calendar Tax Year (which means the tax year ends on December 31), you must file Form 990 on or before May 15.

Are you operating on Fiscal Tax Year? Find your Form 990 due date here.

4. How to File Form 990?

For tax years beginning after July 1, 2019, the IRS mandates the electronic filing of Form 990.

For the tax year beginning prior to July 1, 2019, Form 990 can be filed either electronically or by paper with the IRS.

However, the IRS encourages organizations to file 990 electronically. By E-filing, the IRS can process your 990 returns quicker, and you will get to know the status of your form instantly. E-file Now!

If you choose to file Form 990 by paper, download the Form 990, fill in the necessary details and mail it to the IRS. Find your Form 990 mailing address here.

5. What are the Components of Form 990?

The following are the sections to be filed in Form 990:

  • Revenue, Expenses, and Changes in Net Assets or Fund Balances
  • Checklist of Required Schedules
  • Statements Regarding Other IRS Filings and Tax Compliance
  • Balance Sheets
  • Statement of Program Service Accomplishments
  • List of Officers, Directors, Trustees, and Key Employees
  • Other Information
  • Statement of Revenue
  • Financial Statements and Reporting
  • Statement of Functional Expenses
  • Reconciliation of Net Assets
  • Section 501(c)(3) Organizations

6. Any additional requirements in filing the 990?

Nonprofits and Tax-Exempt Organizations must provide additional information through the various Schedules.

Missing to attach the required schedules may result in IRS penalties due to incorrect filing.

There are 16 Schedules in total available for Form 990 that may need to be attached based on particular organizational activities.

  • Schedule A - Public Charity Status and Public Support
  • Schedule B - Schedule of Contributors
  • Schedule C - Political Campaign and Lobbying Activities
  • Schedule D - Supplemental Financial Statements
  • Schedule E - Schools
  • Schedule F - Statement of Activities Outside the United States
  • Schedule G - Supplemental Information
  • Schedule H - Hospitals
  • Schedule I - Grants and Other Assistance to Organizations, Governments, and Individuals in the U.S
  • Schedule J - Compensation Information
  • Schedule K - Supplemental Information on Tax-Exempt Bonds
  • Schedule L - Transactions with Interested Persons
  • Schedule M - Noncash Contributions
  • Schedule N - Liquidation, Termination, Dissolution, or Significant Disposition of Assets
  • Schedule O - Supplemental Information to Form 990
  • Schedule R - Related Organizations and Unrelated Partnerships Visit https://www.expresstaxexempt.com/form-990/form-990-instructions/ for line by line instructions to complete Form 990.

7. How to file an extension for Form 990?

Nonprofits and Tax-Exempt Organizations can extend the 990 filing deadline by filing the extension Form 8868 that provides an automatic 6-month extension.

The IRS requires no explanation to file tax extension Form 8868, and any request for extension will be approved.

8. What is the penalty for late filing Form 990?

The IRS penalizes nonprofits and Tax-Exempt Organizations for late filing unless they have a proper reason for the delay.

The penalty applies on each day after the due date of the return until it is filed.

The penalty would be $20 a day, not to exceed the lesser of $10,500 or 5% of the gross receipts of the organization for the year.

Nonprofits and Tax-Exempt Organizations with annual gross receipts exceeding $1,067,000 are subject to a penalty of $105 for each day (with a maximum penalty of $53,000 for a return).

If mandatory, organizations will be fined for not filing electronically.

However, an organization must file Form 990 electronically instead of Form 990, if it meets the following conditions:

  • Files at least 250 forms of any type during the tax year, and
  • Has total assets of $10 million or more at the end of the tax year

For tax years beginning after July 1, 2019, the IRS mandates the electronic filing of Form 990.

Click here to know more about Form 990 Penalties.

9. Where do I mail Form 990?

Mailing Address

Mail the completed Form 990 to:

Internal Revenue Service Center,
Ogden, UT 84201-0027.

Click here to know more about 990 mailing addresses.


E-file your Form 990 with our Software

Accurate and Secure Filing

Accurate and Secure Filing

IRS Authorized E-File Provider

IRS Authorized E-File Provider

Auto-generates Schedules

Auto-generates Schedules

Access our resource center for more information about tax relief due to COVID-19. Visit Now