Pennsylvania Nonprofit Compliance

Required annual filings

This guide covers the required filings to maintain a nonprofit corporation in Pennsylvania. If you are looking to form nonprofit in Pennsylvania, please visit our Start Your Pennsylvania Nonprofit guide. The steps below apply to nonprofits that are both incorporated and foreign qualified in Pennsylvania. 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:

The 15 day of the 5 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 Pennsylvania Corporate Tax Exemption Renewals

Not required



Nonprofits are generally not subject to corporate net income taxes.

More information: Pennsylvania Department of Revenue
3 File Pennsylvania Sales Tax Exemption Renewals
Agency:Pennsylvania Department of Revenue
Form:

Form REV-72: Application for Sales Tax Exemption

Agency fee:

$0

Due:

Every 5 years.

4 File Pennsylvania Annual Report
Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations
Form:

Annual Report

Filing method:

Mail or online

Agency fee:

$0

Due:

By April 30 of each year where there has been a change in corporate officers during the preceding calendar year.

Law:

15 Pa.C.S. § 5110

Notes:

Annual reports are only required in years where there has been a change in the organization's officers.

Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations
Form:

Decennial Report of Association Continued Existence

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$70

Due:

The decennial report is due every ten years if no other filings have been made during the ten year period. The next report is due in 2021.

Law:

54 PA Cons Stat § 503.

5 Renew the Charitable Solicitation Registration

Pennsylvania Charitable Organization Registration

Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Charitable Organizations
Law:

10 Pennsylvania Statutes, Chapter 4B, § 162.1 - 162.7

Automatic Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Charitable organizations which receive gross national contributions of $25,000 or less annually and do not use a professional solicitor
  • Organizations of law enforcement personnel, firefighters, or other persons who protect the public safety
  • Religious institutions
  • Educational institutions
  • PTAs
  • Hospitals and hospital foundations
  • Veterans' organizations chartered under federal law, volunteer firemen, ambulance associations, rescue squad associations, and their auxiliaries or affiliates
  • Public, nonprofit library organizations
  • Senior citizen centers and nursing homes
  • Any corporation established by an act of Congress of the United States
Notes:

If your organization is based in Pennsylvania, it may still be required to file an Institutions of Purely Public Charity Statement.

Initial Registration

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Instructions:

Instructions for Registering

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15-250, depending on gross contributions

Notes:
  • Read the exemptions chart carefully and check to see if you still need to file the Institutions of Purely Public Charity Statement.
  • Note the list of attachments that first-time registrants must attach to the application.
  • Some Pennsylvania counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15-250, depending on gross contributions

Due:

Due annually 10.5 months after the end of the fiscal year every year.

Notes:
  • The renewal due date is indicated on the certificate of registration you receive after your initial filing. It is based on your fiscal year end.
  • You must attach an annual financial report.
  • Even if you are exempt, you still may need to file annually under Pennsylvania’s Purely Public Charity Act.

Change of Fiscal Year

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Agency fee:

Varies

Notes:

Fiscal year can be changed during the standard renewal process.

Pennsylvania Institution of Purely Public Charity Registration

Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Charitable Organizations
Law:

10 P.S. § 371. et seq.

Notes:

Charitable organizations that meet the definition of a purely public charity, as defined in The Institutions of Purely Public Charity Act, should register as an institution of public charity instead of registering as a charitable organization.

Registration to Obtain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Bona fide duly constituted religious institutions and such separate groups or corporations which form an integral part of a religious institution and are exempt from filing an annual IRS 990 Return
  • An institution of purely public charity which receives contributions of less than $25,000 per year provided that the institution's program service revenue does not equal or exceed $5,000,000
Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Exemption)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$0

Renewal to Maintain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Bona fide duly constituted religious institutions and such separate groups or corporations which form an integral part of a religious institution and are exempt from filing an annual IRS 990 Return
  • An institution of purely public charity which receives contributions of less than $25,000 per year provided that the institution's program service revenue does not equal or exceed $5,000,000
Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Exemption Renewal)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$0

Due:

Annually within 135 days of the organization's fiscal year end. The due date is May 15th for organizations with a fiscal year end date of December 31.

Initial Registration

Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15

Registration Renewal

Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Renewal)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15

Due:

Annually within 135 days of the organization's fiscal year end. The due date is May 15th for organizations with a fiscal year end date of December 31.

6 Renew the Charitable Solicitation Registration

Pennsylvania Charitable Organization Registration

Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Charitable Organizations
Law:

10 Pennsylvania Statutes, Chapter 4B, § 162.1 - 162.7

Automatic Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Charitable organizations which receive gross national contributions of $25,000 or less annually and do not use a professional solicitor
  • Organizations of law enforcement personnel, firefighters, or other persons who protect the public safety
  • Religious institutions
  • Educational institutions
  • PTAs
  • Hospitals and hospital foundations
  • Veterans' organizations chartered under federal law, volunteer firemen, ambulance associations, rescue squad associations, and their auxiliaries or affiliates
  • Public, nonprofit library organizations
  • Senior citizen centers and nursing homes
  • Any corporation established by an act of Congress of the United States
Notes:

If your organization is based in Pennsylvania, it may still be required to file an Institutions of Purely Public Charity Statement.

Initial Registration

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Instructions:

Instructions for Registering

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15-250, depending on gross contributions

Notes:
  • Read the exemptions chart carefully and check to see if you still need to file the Institutions of Purely Public Charity Statement.
  • Note the list of attachments that first-time registrants must attach to the application.
  • Some Pennsylvania counties and municipalities may require charities that solicit in-person to register prior to fundraising.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15-250, depending on gross contributions

Due:

Due annually 10.5 months after the end of the fiscal year every year.

Notes:
  • The renewal due date is indicated on the certificate of registration you receive after your initial filing. It is based on your fiscal year end.
  • You must attach an annual financial report.
  • Even if you are exempt, you still may need to file annually under Pennsylvania’s Purely Public Charity Act.

Change of Fiscal Year

Form:

Form BCO-10: Charitable Organization Registration Statement

Agency fee:

Varies

Notes:

Fiscal year can be changed during the standard renewal process.

Pennsylvania Institution of Purely Public Charity Registration

Agency:Pennsylvania Department of State - Bureau of Charitable Organizations
Law:

10 P.S. § 371. et seq.

Notes:

Charitable organizations that meet the definition of a purely public charity, as defined in The Institutions of Purely Public Charity Act, should register as an institution of public charity instead of registering as a charitable organization.

Registration to Obtain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Bona fide duly constituted religious institutions and such separate groups or corporations which form an integral part of a religious institution and are exempt from filing an annual IRS 990 Return
  • An institution of purely public charity which receives contributions of less than $25,000 per year provided that the institution's program service revenue does not equal or exceed $5,000,000
Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Exemption)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$0

Renewal to Maintain Exemption

Exemption Eligible Organizations:
  • Bona fide duly constituted religious institutions and such separate groups or corporations which form an integral part of a religious institution and are exempt from filing an annual IRS 990 Return
  • An institution of purely public charity which receives contributions of less than $25,000 per year provided that the institution's program service revenue does not equal or exceed $5,000,000
Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Exemption Renewal)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$0

Due:

Annually within 135 days of the organization's fiscal year end. The due date is May 15th for organizations with a fiscal year end date of December 31.

Initial Registration

Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15

Registration Renewal

Form:

Purely Public Charity Registration Statement (Renewal)

Filing method:

Mail

Agency fee:

$15

Due:

Annually within 135 days of the organization's fiscal year end. The due date is May 15th for organizations with a fiscal year end date of December 31.

7Maintain a Pennsylvania Registered Agent

Maintain a registered agent that has a street address in Pennsylvania. 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 Lancaster , PA to maintain compliance with the state requirement.

Harbor Compliance® proudly partners with the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations to provide insightful resources and compliance solutions to nonprofits in Pennsylvania.



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