IRS proposes new Form 990

The IRS has released a draft of its revised information filing forms for charities and is accepting comments on the changes from the nonprofit sector through September 14.

The revised Form 990 would make changes in several areas, including how nonprofits report on their finances, leadership, governance and program activities, says a summary compiled by the Raleigh-based N.C. Center for Nonprofits.

The draft includes a 10-page “core form” and 15 different additional schedules, not all of which are relevant for all nonprofits.

The core form includes a summary page, which the N.C. Center says will be easily accessible to the public, that asks for information relating to compensation, board and staff numbers, grants and donations and expenses.

Several financial ratios also are part of the summary page, including the ratio of fundraising expenses to contributions and a comparison of executive compensation and program expenses.

Beginning next year, nonprofits with gross receipts of less than $25,000 a year could have to file a Form 990-N, or “e-postcard,” which will ask for only the name and address of the principal officer of the organization.

The IRS may also raise the threshold for filing the full Form 990 to include groups with $50,000 or more in annual gross receipts.

A final revision of the Form 990 should be available in December of this year, the N.C. Center says, with nonprofits filing the new forms for the first time in fiscal 2009.

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