Filed under: Not-for-Profits

February 28, 2017

More than 263,000 Forms 990-EZ were filed with the IRS in 2016. Of those, 139,000 were paper filed. The IRS reports 30% of all paper-filed Forms 990-EZ had an error, while only 1% of electronically filed Forms 990-EZ had an error.

In an effort to reduce the error rate on paper filed Forms 990-EZ, the IRS created an electronic PDF of the 990-EZ with 29 helpful pop up boxes. The boxes provide additional information and, in some cases, links to Form instructions, additional forms, another IRS publications or other helpful information.

You may access the pop up box enhanced Form 990-EZ here.

Once organizations have completed the Form 990-EZ, they can print and file the paper form. However, the IRS has a goal of moving all organizations towards electronically filing the 990 series returns.

We have complied screenshots of the IRS’ helpful hints, which are available here. The information is in plain language and designed to improve accuracy of reporting in the areas that included most mistakes.

Only organizations that have gross revenues of less than $200,000, have total assets of less than $500,000, and meet the following criteria may file the simplified Form 990-EZ, instead of the longer and more complex Form 990. The organization qualifies to file the simplified Form 990-EZ if it:

  • Did not sponsor a Donor Advised Fund (as defined by IRC section 4966)
  • Did not operate a hospital facility
  • Is not tax exempt under IRC section 501(c)(29),
  • Is not a controlling organization as defined by IRC section 512(b)(13),
  • Is not a private foundation as defined by 509(a), and
  • Is not filing a group return.

Of course, very small organizations, which normally have gross receipts of $50,000 or less (over a three year aggregate), may file the electronic Form 990-N.

Please contact your Clark Nuber tax professionals if you have any questions, or would like additional information about filing Forms 990, 990-EZ or 990-N.

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This article contains general information only and should not be construed as accounting, business, financial, investment, legal, tax, or other professional advice or services. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should engage a qualified professional advisor.