Form 990 – Discussion Draft

On June 14, 2007, the IRS released a discussion draft of a substantially redesigned Form 990, Return of Organizations Exempt from Income Tax.  The redesign of the Form, the first since 1979, is based on three guiding principles:

  1. Enhancing transparency by providing the IRS and the organization’s stakeholders with a realistic picture of the organization and its operations, along with the basis for comparing the organization to similar organizations.
  2. Promoting tax compliance by ensuring that the Form accurately reflects the organization’s operations and use of assets, so the IRS may efficiently assess the risk of noncompliance.
  3. Minimizing the burden on filing organizations by asking questions in a manner that makes it relatively easy to fill out the Form and that does not impose unwarranted additional recordkeeping or information-gathering burdens to obtain and substantiate the reported information.

The draft consists of a 10-page core form and 15 schedules, each of which must be completed only by organization conducting certain activities.  The core form includes a summary page providing a snapshot of the organization’s key financial, compensation, governance, and operational information.   

Comments to the discussion draft Form 990 can be sent to and are due by September 14, 2007.  The IRS hopes to have the redesigned Form 990 ready in 2009 for the 2008 tax filing year.

Additional Information:

Draft Redesigned Form 990, Schedules, and Instructions

Draft Redesigned Form 990 – IRS

Independent Sector’s Analysis (rev. 8/3/07)