GuideStar Advises That June 30 Fiscal Year End Will Trigger New Form 990 Filing Deadline for Many Nonprofits

Failure to file may lead to loss of tax-exempt status
Release date: June 28, 2010

Washington, D.C., and Williamsburg, Va.—GuideStar, the leading source of nonprofit information, encourages any exempt organization whose fiscal year ends June 30 to verify that it is compliant with IRS reporting requirements in order to maintain its exemption.

Most tax-exempt organizations except churches are required to file an annual information return (IRS Form 990-N, 990-EZ, 990, or 990-PF). Organizations required to file that fail to do so for three consecutive years will automatically lose tax-exempt status, as mandated by a provision of the Pension Protection Act of 2006.

The deadline for filing Form 990 and its variants is determined by the end of the filing organization's fiscal year. The filing deadline for an organization whose fiscal year ends on June 30, 2010, is November 15, 2010.

"The first time the revocation provision of the Pension Protection Act was put in effect was last May, when returns for organizations whose fiscal year ended December 31, 2009, were due," said Bob Ottenhoff, GuideStar's president and CEO. "We learned then that thousands of nonprofits, particularly smaller ones, did not realize they needed to file and were at risk of losing their exemptions. That's why GuideStar created a nonprofit resource center about the revocations. Nonprofits can use the resource center to stay up to date on what they must do in terms of filing an annual information return."

An organization's annual gross revenue and assets determine which version of the 990 it must file. Filing extensions are available for Forms 990-EZ, 990, and 990-PF, but not for Form 990-N:

Exempt Organization Return Filing Requirements and Extensions for Tax Years Beginning in 2009
Financial ActivityFormExtensions
Gross receipts normally < or = $25,000 990-N
Note: Organizations eligible to file the 990-N may choose to file a 990-EZ or 990 instead
None for the 990-N; available for the 990-EZ and 990
Gross receipts < $500,000 and
Total assets < $1.25 million
Note: Organizations eligible to file the 990-EZ may choose to file the 990 instead
Available for both the 990-EZ and 990
Gross receipts > or = $500,000, or
Total assets > or = $1.25 million
990 Available
Private foundation (regardless of financial activity) 990-PF Available

GuideStar's nonprofit resource center provides an overview of the revocations issue and several quick links, including ones to a Form 990-N filing status database, the mechanics of filing Form 990-N, filing exceptions, filing thresholds, filing deadlines and extensions, and IRS and GuideStar revocation FAQs. The resource center is updated as new developments related to the revocations occur.

"We hope every exempt organization will use these resources to ensure that they are not at risk of losing their exemptions for failure to file an annual return," Ottenhoff said. "Nonprofits play vital roles in our society, and losing tax-exempt status will hurt not only the organizations but also the causes and people they serve."

About GuideStar

GuideStar,, connects people and organizations with information on the programs and finances of more than 1.8 million IRS-recognized nonprofits. GuideStar serves a wide audience inside and outside the nonprofit sector, including individual donors, nonprofit leaders, grantmakers, government officials, academic researchers, and the media.

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