A Plea for Higher Foundation-Payout Rules

The usually humorous nonprofit blogger Vu Le (writing at his blog, Nonprofit AF), takes on a more somber tone in The ethical argument for foundations to increase their annual payout rate beyond 5% (August 4, 2019). It’s the day after the deadly mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. “The last few years,” he writes, “have been hellish on all fronts….”  “Nonprofits have been especially hard hit,” being Read More

Donor-Advised Funds: New Reform Proposal

Donor-advised funds (DAFs) have enjoyed spectacular success in recent years, and the most current data show this trend not only continuing but accelerating.  But along with this popularity has come considerable criticism from many quarters as well as attempts by federal and state lawmakers to regulate them.  Recently, two of the philanthropy sector’s leading scholars, Professors Roger Colinvaux (Catholic Read More

Charitable Hospitals Behaving Badly

Over the summer of 2019, there were important showdowns around the United States against certain charitable healthcare systems acting in decidedly uncharitable (and unlawful) ways. The hospital behemoths with overflowing coffers relentlessly hounded patients for every last nickel and dime. The victims included those least able to afford it; people earning just at or above the minimum wage - some of them the Read More

Nonprofit Hospitals: Officials Target Them, Again

“Making sure that tax-exempt hospitals abide by their community benefit standards is a very important issue for me,” wrote Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) recently. This influential lawmaker has, once again, made clear he wants answers about “how many of the nation’s approximately 3,000 tax-exempt hospitals are in compliance with charity care requirements.”  It’s not the first time he has Read More

Tax Act Impact on Charities: New Report

In a number of posts in the last 18 months or so, we’ve reported on the fallout from the hastily adopted and not well-thought-out 2017 Tax Cuts & Jobs Act (TCJA). Most recently, in The Fringe Benefits Tax: Hope for Repeal (April 9, 2019), we told you about some possible (bipartisan) legislative action to repeal one of the provisions most disliked by the charitable sector: the new UBI tax on transportation fringe Read More

For Purpose Law to Host TEGE Exempt Organizations Update

On June 15th, 2018, For Purpose Law Group is excited to host the upcoming TEGE Exempt Organizations Council program “TEGE Exempt Organizations Update,” presented in cooperation with the Greater Washington Society of CPAs. This program will bring together current and former IRS regulators and private practitioners in the legal and accounting fields to discuss the latest statutory, regulatory, and judicial developments Read More

Form 990: Important Processing Changes

For many nonprofit organizations that operate on a calendar fiscal year, the due date for the annual Form 990, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax, was yesterday - May 15, 2018. Of course, an organization may choose to file Form 8868, Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File an Exempt Organization Return, to obtain an automatic extension for six months to file a Form 990. In light of some Read More

New Guidance for Nonprofits Making Corporate Changes

Many nonprofit organizations thrive year after year in the same location with the same mission, structure, activities, and operations. For others, though, large or small changes may be necessary or desirable; they and their advisors need to know if - and how - they must report these new developments to the Internal Revenue Service. For many decades, the Treasury Department and the IRS had issued confusing - and Read More

Denials of 501(c)(3) Tax Exemption: A New Study

For nonprofit law and policy geeks interested in the decision process of the IRS for 501(c)(3) tax exemptions, there's an important recent study available online through the Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Professor Terri Lynn Helge of Texas A&M University School of Law has written a first-of-its-kind analysis of IRS denials of Form 1023 (and 1023-EZ) exemption applications for the period 2004 through Read More

Johnson Amendment Stays … For Now

In mid-December 2017, when the GOP Congressional leadership was scrambling to get a tax-overhaul bill in final form - one that would meld the quite different House and Senate versions - an issue that could have gone either way, in or out, was the thorny matter of 501(c)(3)s dabbling or plunging headlong into the political arena.    History of Johnson Amendment Under the 1954 Johnson Amendment to an earlier Read More