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Pennsylvania

Legal Counsel for Philanthropy and the Nonprofit Sector

Information and resources on nonprofit law & regulation

Pennsylvania Registration and Compliance

Welcome to the registration and compliance page for Pennsylvania nonprofit organizations. Below you will find information on initial filings required to form a new nonprofit organization in Pennsylvania, annual filing requirements for existing organizations, and employment filings for nonprofits with employees. This page also contains a link to the relevant nonprofit statute for the State of Pennsylvania. To navigate to one of these sections, click on the appropriate link on the left of this page.

Please feel free to call or email us if you have any registration, compliance or other legal needs or questions regarding your nonprofit organization. If you are forming a new organization, you may also be interested in the following additional resources:

Starting a Nonprofit Organization in Pennsylvania: Initial Filings

1. To Incorporate in Pennsylvania

a. Submit 2 copies of Articles of Incorporation (DSCB:15-5306) and Docketing Statement (DSCB:15-134A) to:

Department of State
Corporation Bureau
PO Box 8722
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8722

Information: (717) 787-1057
Fax: (717) 783-2244
Web Site: www.dos.state.pa.us/corps/site/default.asp
Filing Fee: $125

Note: This filing may be completed online.
All incorporators must sign Articles of Incorporation.
A P.O. Box alone is not acceptable for the registered address of the organization.

b. The corporation must publish either the intent to file or the actual filing of the Articles of Incorporation in two newspapers. It is recommended that one of them be a legal journal, if possible. Proof of publication should be filed in the minutes of the corporation.

2. To Obtain 501(c) Tax-Exempt Status

a. Submit Form 1023 (501(c)(3) organizations) or 1024 (other 501(c) organizations), Application for Recognition of Exemption to:

Note new address:
Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 12192
Covington, KY 41012-0192

Information: (800) 829-1040
Forms: (800) 829-3676
Web Site: www.irs.gov/charities
Form 1023 Filing Fee: $850 ($275 for IRS Form 1023-EZ)
Form 1024 Filing Fee: $850 ($400 if annual receipts will average not more than $10,000 in the first 4 years)

Note: Certain 501(c)(3) organizations, including those with gross revenues at or below $50,000 annually, may qualify to file the online Form 1023-EZ, Streamlined Application for Recognition of Exemption. For more information and to determine if you are eligible for this form, refer to our Form 1023-EZ FAQ.

b. 501(c)(4) organizations formed after July 8, 2016 must file Form 8976, Notice of Intent to Operate Under Section 501(c)(4), electronically within 60 days of formation:

Web Site: services.irs.gov/datamart/login.do
Filing Fee: $50 (This fee must be paid through the pay.gov website)

Notes: This filing must be completed by all 501(c)(4) organizations - including "self-declaring" organizations that do not file IRS Form 1024.
For more information about this filing, refer to the IRS website.

3. To Register with the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue and Obtain Sales Tax Exemption

Submit Pennsylvania Department of Revenue Form REV-72 along with copies of the 501(c)(3) Determination Letter from the IRS, Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, a current financial statement (or budget) and the most recently filed Form 990 (if available) to:

Department of Revenue
Bureau of Business Trust Fund Taxes
Miscellaneous Tax Division
Dept. 280909
Harrisburg, PA 17128-0909

Information: (717) 783-5473
Web Site: www.revenue.state.pa.us
Filing Fee: $0

4. To Register with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Charitable Organizations

Within 30 days of receiving $25,000 in contributions or prior to compensating a paid solicitor to solicit contributions in Pennsylvania, submit Form BCO-10 and copies of the 501(c)(3) Determination Letter from the IRS, Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws, and IRS Form 990 to:

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Department of State
Bureau of Charitable Organizations
207 North Office Building
Harrisburg, PA 17120

Information: (717) 783-1720
Fax: (717) 783-6014
Web Site: www.dos.state.pa.us/charities
Filing Fee: $15-$250 (depending on contributions)

Notes: If contributions under $50,000: Provide internally prepared audit with Form BCO-10.
If contributions $50,000-$100,000: Provide compiled, reviewed or audited financials with Form BCO-10.
If contributions $100,000-$300,000: Provide reviewed or audited financials with Form BCO-10.
If contributions $300,000 or greater: Provide audited financials with Form BCO-10.

Organizations that are not required to file an IRS Form 990 must file a Form BCO-23 to accompany Form BCO-10. Some organizations are exempt from filing Form BCO-10. Refer to the Department of State's website for a complete list of exemptions.

Note that organizations exempt from filing Form BCO-10 that are located in Pennsylvania, must still file an "Institution of Purely Public Charity Registration Statement" along with a fee of $15 and a copy of the organization's IRS Form 990.


Annual Filings for Pennsylvania Nonprofit Organizations

1. Pennsylvania Department of State

a. Form: Annual Statement
Due Date: On or before April 30 of each year in which there has been a change in corporate officers during the preceding calendar year.

Department of State
Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations
PO Box 8722
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8722

Information: (717) 787-1057
Fax: (717) 783-2244
Web Site: www.dos.state.pa.us/corps
Filing Fee: $0

Note: The annual statement may be filed online.

b. Form: Decennial Report of Association Continued Existence
Due Date: Once every ten years if the corporation has not made a new or amended filing with the Corporation Bureau in the last 10 years.

Department of State
Corporation Bureau
PO Box 8722
Harrisburg, PA 17105-8722

Information: (717) 787-1057
Fax: (717) 783-2244
Web Site: www.dos.state.pa.us/corps
Filing Fee: $70

2. Pennsylvania Bureau of Charitable Organizations

Form: BCO-10 (Charitable Organization Registration Statement)
Due Date: 315 days after end of fiscal year*

Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
Department of State
Bureau of Charitable Organizations
207 North Office Building
Harrisburg, PA 17120

Information: (717) 783-1720
Fax: (717) 783-6014
Web Site: http://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Charities/Pages/default.aspx
Filing Fee: $15-$250 (depending on contributions)
Late Fee: $25/month (no waiver)

If contributions under $50,000: Provide internally prepared financial statements.
If contributions $50,000-$100,000: Provide compiled financial statements.
If contributions greater than $100,000 and less than $300,000: Provide reviewed financial statements.
If contributions greater than or equal to $300,000: Provide audited financial statements.

Notes: The statute requires the renewal be filed within 135 days of the end of the organization's fiscal year, but the Bureau of Charitable Organizations automatically adds a 180 day extension period to the statutory requirement to equal 315 full days. As a result, extension requests are no longer required.

Some organizations are exempt from this filing. Refer to the Exclusions and Exemptions Chart for details. Even if an organization is exempt from this filing, it may still be required to file the "Institutions of Purely Public Charity Registration Statement". Refer to the Pennsylvania Department of State's website regarding filing requirements for more details.

Include signed copy of IRS Form 990 with filing.

Include Form BCO-23 if organization not required to file Form 990 with IRS, or if organization files Form 990-EZ or Form 990-PF.

3. Internal Revenue Service

Form: Annual Return Form 990
Due Date: 4 ½ months after end of fiscal year

Internal Revenue Service
Ogden, UT 84201-0027

Information: (800) 829-1040
Forms: (800) 829-3676
Web Site: www.irs.gov/charities
Filing Fee: $0

Public Charities: Refer to the IRS website to determine which form to file (Form 990, Form 990-EZ or Form 990-N).

Private Foundations: Submit Form 990PF, regardless of revenues.

4. Pennsylvania Attorney General

Form: Copy of Form 990-PF
Due Date: 4 ½ months after end of fiscal year

Office of the Attorney General
14th Floor Strawberry Square
Harrisburg, PA 17120

Phone: (717) 783-2853
Fax: (717) 787-1190
Web Site: www.attorneygeneral.gov
Filing Fee: $0

Note: Only private foundations are required to submit this filing.

5. Pennsylvania Department of Revenue

Form: REV-72 (Sales Tax Exemption Renewal)
Due Date: Once every five years. Approximately 2 months before an organization's sales tax exemption expires, the Department of Revenue will send a renewal packet to the organization.

Department of Revenue
Bureau of Business Trust Fund Taxes
Miscellaneous Tax Division
Dept. 280909
Harrisburg, PA 17128-0909

Information: (717) 783-5473
Web Site: www.revenue.state.pa.us
Filing Fee: $0


Pennsylvania Employment Filings

If the organization will have employees, the following filing is required:

To Register with the Department of Revenue and Department of Labor & Industry

Apply for an Employer Account by completing the online Form PA-100.

Pennsylvania Department of Revenue
Bureau of Business Trust Fund Taxes
PO Box 280904
Harrisburg, PA 17128-0904

Phone: 717-787-1064
Web Site: http://www.revenue.pa.gov/FormsandPublications/FormsforBusinesses/Pages/Business-Registration-Forms.aspx#.WP5W4GcxQ2c

Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry
Employer Services
7th Floor, Labor & Industry Building
651 Boas Street
Harrisburg, PA 17121

Phone: 866-403-6163
Web Site: http://www.uc.pa.gov/portal/server.pt/community/employer_uc_services/10343

Important note about unemployment insurance: Many states allow nonprofit organizations to fund unemployment insurance benefits on a reimbursable basis. This method of funding unemployment insurance may require additional filings not listed here. Furthermore, electing this method may require the organization to register and file in paper format. Organizations contemplating this method of funding their unemployment insurance obligations should check with the appropriate state office administering the unemployment insurance in that state.

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