Michigan Nonprofit Compliance

Required annual filings

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

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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.

Fact Checked:8/28/19
2 File Michigan Corporate Tax Exemption Renewals

Not required



There is no renewal requirement for Michigan corporate income tax exemption.

More information: Michigan Department of Treasury
3 File Michigan Sales Tax Exemption Renewals

Not required



Michigan nonprofits are automatically exempt.

More information: Michigan Department of Treasury
4 File Michigan Annual Report

If the nonprofit was formed in Michigan (Domestic):

Agency:Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) - Bureau of Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing - Corporations Division
Form:

A pre-printed annual report is mailed to the corporation’s resident agent at the registered office approximately three months prior to the due date. Online filing is available about 90 days before the report's due date. 

Filing Method:

Mail, in-person, or online.

Agency Fee:

$20

Due:

Annually by October 1 beginning the year following incorporation.

Law:

Michigan Code § 450.2911

Penalties:

If a corporation fails to submit their annual report or pay the related fee within two years of the due date of the report, the corporation automatically dissolves by operation of law.

Notes:
  • Anyone with authority may file.
  • Original signatures are not required.
  • If you file online, the filed report will appear on the website in ~1 hour.
Fact Checked:10/1/19

If the nonprofit was formed outside of Michigan (Foreign):

Agency:Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) - Bureau of Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing - Corporations Division
Form:

A pre-printed annual report is mailed to the corporation’s resident agent at the registered office approximately three months prior to the due date. Online filing is available about 90 days before the report's due date. 

Filing Method:

Mail, in-person, or online.

Agency Fee:

$20

Due:

Annually by October 1 beginning the year following initial authorization to conduct business in Michigan.

Law:

Michigan Code § 450.2911

Penalties:

If a foreign corporation fails to submit their annual report or pay the related fee within one year of the due date of the report, the corporation's certificate of authority is automatically revoked by operation of law.

Fact Checked:10/1/19
5 Renew the Charitable Solicitation Registration

Michigan Charitable Solicitation Registration

Agency:Michigan Attorney General - Charitable Trust Section
Law:

Michigan Compiled Laws §400.271 through 400.292

Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?Yes
Fact Checked:1/16/19

One-Time Exemption Registration

Exemption Eligible Organizations:

Organizations exempt under both the Charitable Organizations and Solicitations Act (COSA) and the Supervision of Trustees for Charitable Purposes Act (STCPA):

  • An organization that requests contributions only for the relief or benefit of a named individual or family with all fundraising conducted by persons who are unpaid for their service
  • A Michigan educational institution approved by the Michigan Board of Education
  • A veterans organization incorporated under federal law
  • A licensed hospital (Health systems and other affiliates are not exempt even if they include a licensed hospital)
  • A school booster organization operating with the knowledge and approval of an educational institution for the support or promotion of educational, artistic, musical, or athletic programs or events
  • A governmental unit or instrumentality
  • An advocacy or lobbying organization, or an organization associated with an advocacy organization, political party, candidate or committee, that does not have 501(c)(3) status (If the organization's IRS 501(c)(3) determination letter requires it to file a Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-N, the organization likely does not qualify for this exemption)
  • An organization that will not have 501(c)(3) status and whose principal purpose is not charitable but that solicits from time to time for a charitable purpose (To qualify for this exemption the organization must not have or intend to receive 501(c)(3) status, all fundraising must be performed by members of the organization who are not paid for their services, and all funds must be wholly used for the purposes for which they were solicited)

Organizations exempt under COSA:

  • An organization that confines solicitations to drives solely among members, directors and their immediate families, where the general public is not invited to become a member. This includes a private foundation for IRS tax purposes that receives contributions solely from incorporators, directors, stockholders or their families, or from a sponsoring business
  • An organization whose sole source of contributions is a charitable organization registered with this office to solicit contributions
  • A hospital-based foundation or auxiliary that solicits contributions solely for 1 or more licensed hospitals
  • An organization that does not intend to solicit and receive, and does not actually receive, contributions in excess of $25,000 (Excluding grants from government agencies or restricted grants from foundations) during any 12-month period (All fundraising functions must be conducted by persons, whether staff or contractors, who are not paid for their services and the organization must make a financial statement of its activities of its most recent fiscal year available to its members and the public)
  • A nonprofit corporation whose purpose is the owning and operating of facilities for the aged and chronically ill that is under the sole control of a religious or fraternal society
  • An organization at least 50% of whose activities are licensed by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to serve children and families

Organizations exempt under STCPA:

  • An organization incorporated or organized in a state other than Michigan that will never hold assets in Michigan, including cash, savings accounts, investment accounts, land, building, equipment, etc.
  • An organization that receives operating funds from United Way
  • An amateur theater, band, orchestra, chorale or dance organization
Form:

Form CTS-03: Request for Exemption

Filing Method:

Mail or email to ct_email@mi.gov.

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

Exemptions do not expire as long as the organization continues to qualify under the exemption criteria.

Fact Checked:1/16/20

Initial Registration

Form:

Form CTS-01: Initial Solicitation Registration Form

Filing Method:

Mail or online.

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:
  • Note the list of ~8 attachments that first-time registrants must include with the application. Larger organizations must attach financial statements / audit.
  • One principal officer or director must sign. Signatures need not be notarized.
  • Verify that the attorney general's office received the registration form by searching for the organization at www.michigan.gov/AGCharitySearch
  • Following review if your initial registration or exemption, the Attorney General may instruct your organization to complete additional forms.
  • Some Michigan counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.
Fact Checked:6/5/18

Registration Renewal

Form:

Form CTS-02: Renewal Solicitation Registration Form

Filing Method:

Mail or online.

Agency Fee:

$0

Due:

Renewal is due annually 7 months after the close of your nonprofit's fiscal year. So if your fiscal calendar ends December 31, then the renewal is due by July 31.

Notes:
  • Note the list of ~5 attachments you must include with the application. Larger organiztaions must attach financial statements / audit.
Fact Checked:4/18/17

Change of Fiscal Year

Form:

Form CTS-02: Renewal Solicitation Registration Form

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

Fiscal year can be changed during the standard renewal process.

Fact Checked:12/7/18
6Maintain a Michigan Registered Agent

Maintain a registered agent that has a street address in Michigan. 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 Okemos , MI to maintain compliance with the state requirement.


Continue reading

Fundraising Compliance

Learn how to stay compliant with charitable solicitation laws.

Read the guide
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