Arkansas Nonprofit Compliance

Required annual filings

This guide covers the required filings to maintain a nonprofit corporation in Arkansas. If you are looking to form nonprofit in Arkansas, please visit our Start Your Arkansas Nonprofit guide. The steps below apply to nonprofits that are both incorporated and foreign qualified in Arkansas. Please note that this is a general list and may not be exhaustive or applicable to all nonprofits.

1 File IRS Form 990
Agency:Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
Form:

IRS Form 990-N, 990-EZ, 990-PF or 990

Instructions:

See Form 990 Thresholds to determine which form to file.  Then see Current Form 990 Series for instructions.

Due:

By the 15th day of the 5th month following the end of the taxable year.  For most organizations, the tax year ends December 31 so the Form 990 is due May 15.

2 File Arkansas Corporate Tax Exemption Renewals

Not required



Exemptions do not need to be renewed in Arkansas.

More information: Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration
3 File Arkansas Sales Tax Exemption Renewals

Not required



Arkansas does not offer general exemptions to sales tax, so there is no renewal.

More information: Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration
4 File Arkansas Annual Report
Agency:Arkansas Secretary of State - Business and Commercial Services Division (BCS)
Form:

Annual Report

Filing Method:

Mail, in-person, or online.

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

Annually by August 1.

Law:

Arkansas Code Annotated § 4-33-131 

5 Renew the Charitable Solicitation Registration

Arkansas Charitable Organization Registration

Agency:Arkansas Secretary of State - Business and Commercial Services Division (BCS) (Charities)
Law:

Arkansas Code Ann. § 4-28-402

Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

One-Time Exemption Registration

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Bona fide, duly constituted, religious entities that are exempt from taxation pursuant to the Internal Revenue Code and no part of the entity’s income inures to the direct benefit of any individual
  • Educational institutions approved by any state or the United States or by an accrediting body and parent teacher organizations
  • Political candidates and organizations
  • Governmental organizations
  • Nonprofit hospitals
  • Charities that do not intent to solicit and receive and do not actually receive more than $25,000 in contributions during a fical year and do not use professional fundraisers
  • Persons or entities that solicit for exempt organizations
Form:

Form EX-01: Exempt Organization Verification

Filing Method:

Email to charities@sos.arkansas.gov

Agency Fee:

$0

Law:

Arkansas Code Ann. § 4-28-404

Notarize:Required
Notes:
  • Exemptions do not expire as long as the organization continues to qualify under the exemption criteria.
  • Educational institutions must submit a letter of accreditation with their exemption application.
Required Attachments:
  • A copy of the appropriate Internal Revenue Service tax-exempt status form, if applicable
  • A copy of the organization’s filed Articles of Incorporation
  • Satisfactory proof the organization is in good standing

Initial Registration

Form:

Form CR-01: Charitable Organization Registration Form

Instructions:

Charitable Registration in Arkansas

Filing Method:

File by mail or email to charities@sos.arkansas.gov.

Agency Fee:

$0

Turnaround:

1-2 weeks

Notarize:Required
Notes:
  • One signature of officer, director, or incorporator required.
  • Some Arkansas counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.
Before you Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  • Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.
  • If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.
  • Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.

Foreign Applicants:

  • Check the available exemptions to see if your charity is eligible for exemption from the full registration requirement.
  • If your charity meets the audit threshold, obtain an audited financial report to submit with your registration application.
  • Look through the list of required attachments and make sure that you have each required document in hand before starting the registration application.
  • If you will foreign qualify in Arkansas, obtain a certificate of good standing from your home state to submit during the foreign qualification process.
How to Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  1. File entity formation documents with the Arkansas Secretary of State.
  2. Mail or email a completed Charitable Organization Registration Form and all required attachments to the Arkansas Secretary of State - Business and Commercial Services Division - Charities Section.

Foreign Applicants:

  1. Determine whether or not your charity will need to foreign qualify based on your activity in Arkansas. If not required, skip to number 3.
  2. File foreign qualification documents with the Arkansas Secretary of State.
  3. Mail or email a completed Charitable Organization Registration Form and all required attachments to the Arkansas Secretary of State - Business and Commercial Services Division - Charities Section.
Required Attachments:

Registration Renewal

Form:

Form CR-03: Annual Financial Report Form

Filing Method:

Mail or email to charities@sos.arkansas.gov.

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:
  • Annually within 180 days (6 months) of the organization's fiscal year end.
  • There is no official start to the renewal period, so renewals may be submitted as soon as financials become available for the most recently completed fiscal year.
Due Date Extension:

Due dates can be extended for 6 months beyond the original due date by emailing the secretary of state at charities@sos.arkansas.gov and including the words “Annual Financial Report Extension” in the subject line of the email.

Notarize:Required
Required Attachments:
  • IRS form 990
  • Audited financials (if the gross revenue of the organizations was in excess of $500,000 in any fiscal year)
  • New or updated relationships or contracts with fund-raising counsel, paid solicitors, or commercial coventurers
  • Only if amended: IRS determination letter, articles of incorporation, and bylaws

Contract Filing

Form:

Form CR-04: Notice of Sales Promotion with Coventurer

Filing Method:

Email to charities@sos.arkansas.gov

Agency Fee:

$0

Turnaround:

1-2 business days

Due:

Every charitable organization subject to the registration requirements of A.C.A. § 4-28-402 that agrees to permit a charitable sales promotion to be conducted in its behalf shall obtain a written agreement from the commercial coventurer and file a copy of the agreement with the Secretary of State before the commencement of the charitable sales promotion within this state.

Original Ink:Not required
Notarize:Not required
Notes:An authorized representative of the charitable organization and the commercial coventurer must sign the agreement, and the terms of the agreement shall include at a minimum the following:
  1. The goods or services to be offered to the public;
  2. The geographic area where, and the starting and final date when, the offering is to be made;
  3. The manner in which the name of the charitable organization is to be used, including any representation to be made to the public as to the amount or percent per unit of goods or service purchased or used that is to benefit the charitable organization;
  4. A provision for an accounting on a per unit basis to be given by the commercial coventurer to the charitable organization and the date on which it is to be made; and
  5. The date when and the manner in which the benefit is to be conferred on the charitable organization.
How to Apply:

The charity must be registered to solicit charitable contributions or otherwise exempt for the contract to be accepted.

Change of Fiscal Year

Form:

Form CR-03: Annual Financial Report Form

Agency Fee:

$0

Turnaround:

1-2 business days

Notes:

File the short year form with the updated fiscal year information.

Cancellation

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

To close out your registration, send a signed and dated letter stating that you would like to withdraw.

6Maintain a Arkansas Registered Agent

Maintain a registered agent that has a street address in Arkansas. The registered agent is responsible for receiving legal documents such as service of process. Appointing a registered agent service is often preferable to listing an officer or director, as their information often changes. Consider using our registered agent service in Mountain Home , AR to maintain compliance with the state requirement.


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