Reporting Changes to the IRS

Posted on Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Sometimes an organization will make changes to its programs, bylaws or even its name.  Did you know that you are required to report these and other changes to the IRS? 

Any changes in an organization’s name, address, structure or operations must be reported to the IRS on its annual informational return (Form 990 or 990-EZ).  If the organization is not required to file an annual return, it must report these changes to the Exempt Organizations Determinations Office. 

If you are unsure as to the effect of the changes on your organization’s exempt status or public charity status, you may request a determination letter or private letter ruling.  Requests for determination letters and letter rulings require the submission of specific information and documentation, as well as a user fee.

In some instances there are additional requirements that the organization must take to report changes.  For example, a change in the organization’s name requires the organization to attach amendments to the articles of incorporation with proof of filing with the state of incorporation to the annual return.   A change in accounting period or a change in accounting method, require even more steps.
For a change in accounting period to take effect, you must timely file the organization’s applicable informational return with the appropriate Internal Revenue Service Center for the short period for which the return is required.  Form 990 should indicate a change of accounting period is being made.  The short period form is due the fifteenth day of the fifth month following the close of the short period.  If your organization has previously changed its annual accounting period at any time within the last ten calendar years ending with the calendar year the includes the beginning of the current short period, you must file Form 1128, Application for Change in Accounting Period.  It also must be filed by the fifteenth day of the fifth month following the close of the short period.  Organizations described in sections 526, 527, or 528 must file Form 1128.

To request a change in accounting method, you must file Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method.  Form 3115 should be filed with your annual information return for the year of change.  In special situations Form 3115 must be filed during the tax year for which the change is requested.

If your organization undergoes any changes, make sure you properly report them to the IRS to ensure the organization’s tax-exempt status is not jeopardized.

Posted by: Carrie Minnich, CPA

Posted in Mission Minded Nonprofits

Disclaimer: The information contained in Dulin, Ward & DeWald’s blog is provided for general educational purposes only and should not be construed as financial or legal advice on any subject matter. Before taking any action based on this information, we strongly encourage you to consult competent legal, accounting or other professional advice about your specific situation. Questions on blog posts may be submitted to your DWD representative.

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