How to file for tax exempt status as a non-profit organization?

UPDATED: Aug 16, 2011

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How to file for tax exempt status as a non-profit organization?

I am starting a non-profit organization [501(c)(3)] and I would like to know how exactly (i.e. what forms to fill out) to get exemption status by the IRS?

Asked on August 16, 2011 California


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The IRS requires that you fill out and file for 1023, which is an Application for Recognition and Exemption as a 501c(3) not-for profit corporation. There is, of course, a user fee associated with the filing of the form (did you expect anything less, really?) in order to have them even look at the application for tax exempt status.  The IRS does not want to make this a mystery for you so they have set up a website that provides the appropriate links to the forms, instructions for filling it out, and even a tutorial on the matter.  I will give you the link here.  Good luck to you on your new endeavor.,,id=96109,00.html

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