NonProfit Organization: How To Keep Your Exemption Status
Your organization is approved for tax-exempt status at the federal level, Congratulations!
Now you’ll need to make sure your organization will also be tax-exempt at the state and local levels so it doesn’t have to pay state corporate income tax, sales tax or property tax.
Once you’ve met your state’s requirements for operating as a nonprofit, you’ll need to get any permits or licenses required to operate your business and make sure to comply with building codes and other local regulations.
Being a nonprofit only exempts you from taxes; it does not exempt you from meeting the other requirements for your business type in the area where you will operate.
Once you’ve approved at every level, there’s still work to do. Maintaining your nonprofit status is an ongoing process.
Here are some things you need to do:
- Comply with annual IRS requirements to file Form 990 or Form 990-EZ. In these forms, you will report your organization’s activities, governance, revenue, expenses and net assets. Be aware that your completed form will be publicly available. Also, your state government may require a copy.
- Make sure your organization operates in the way you said it would in your application.
- Run your organization like a business with its own bank account and credit card. Keep all financial transactions completely separate from your personal accounts.
- If you have too few funding sources, you might have to reorganize as a private foundation. Foundations must operate by a completely different set of rules.
- Do not allow your organization to participate in any political campaigns.
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