Charities could lose non-profit status, Congressman Filner warns

May 17th deadline looms for non-profits to file returns

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Congressman Bob Filner wants to make sure charities in San Diego and Imperial counties know they could be threatened by a rule that requires the organizations to file a yearly return with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to keep their the non-profit status. Organizations that go three years without filing an annual return will automatically lose its tax-exempt status.

“Charities do so much for other people they sometimes get caught up in serving the community and fall behind on paperwork.  I want to make sure they can keep their tax-exempt status and keep serving people,” said Filner.  “Many of these charities are the backbones of our communities, and we can’t afford to lose them.”

The deadline is Monday, May 17, for these organizations to file the required forms. The National Center for Charitable Statistics has created a website to search what organizations could be threatened http://nccsdataweb.urban.org/PubApps/statePicker.php?prog=epostcard&display=state.

The Pension Protection Act of 2006 requires most tax-exempt organizations, other than churches or other houses of worship, to file a yearly return or notice with the IRS. An organization that has not filed an annual return in the past three years, even those with gross receipts normally under $25,000, could automatically loses tax-exempt status.

Loss of exempt status means an organization must file income tax returns and pay income tax, and its contributors will not be able to deduct their donations. Organizations would then have to file all over again for recognition as tax-exempt with the IRS.

For more information, the IRS website has further details http://www.irs.gov/charities/article/0,,id=217087,00.html

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