Every year around this time, we hear from nonprofits that are trying to coordinate state charitable solicitation registration renewals and IRS Form 990 filings. For nonprofits running on a calendar year, fundraising registrations are due May 15, which is also the due date for the 990.
This is unfortunate timing, since fundraising registration renewals require information from the 990. In many states, a copy of the 990 is required in the renewal package. Organizations that finish their 990 filings well in advance of the deadline may be able to get everything filed on time, but for many nonprofits, that’s not in the cards.
If you foresee challenges meeting your state deadlines, you do have some options. Our advice is to relax, take a look at the following, and lay out a plan for making your filings as stress-free as you can this year.
First, take some time to map out your renewal deadlines in the states where you’re registered for fundraising. If you’re running on a calendar year, your charitable solicitation renewal is due May 15 in the following states:
For organizations with a different fiscal year, your due date is four months and 15 days after the close of your fiscal year. For example, if your fiscal year ends June 30, your renewals are due November 15.
Once you’ve established where your renewals are due, you can apply for extensions. In some cases, charity offices might require a copy of an 990 extension from the IRS, obtained through Form 8868. The process for submitting charitable solicitation renewal extensions varies in each state, and each state grants a different amount of time to file. Once again, you can save yourself some stress by noting the amount of time you’ve been awarded on each extension and mapping out your new due dates to avoid future conflicts.
If for some reason your nonprofit is ineligible for a 990 extension, you’ll generally need to plan ahead and file your fundraising registration renewals on time.
The benefit of using an e-filer is the assurance that your return will be completed on time. E-filers such as File990 use automatic reminders based on your fiscal period to remind you of your approaching due date and take away the stress of looming deadlines. Your organization’s financial officer will be elated to have one less task on their plate and the chance of filing your return late is dramatically reduced!
Financial reports and state registrations should never stand in the way of your plans. If you’re up against some tight deadlines, we can help by turning around the renewal applications as quickly as possible following filing of your 990. Just give us a call at 1-888-995-5895 or get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.