facebook linkedin-square google-plus menu-arrow angle-left angle-right envelope angle-double-right level-up envelope phone map-marker
Back To Top


Legal Counsel for Philanthropy and the Nonprofit Sector

Information and resources on nonprofit law & regulation

Ohio Registration and Compliance

Welcome to the registration and compliance page for Ohio nonprofit organizations. Below you will find information on initial filings required to form a new nonprofit organization in Ohio, 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 Ohio. 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 Ohio: Initial Filings

1. To Incorporate in Ohio

Submit Articles of Incorporation (Form #532B) to:

Ohio Secretary of State
PO Box 670
Columbus, OH 43216

Information: (614) 466-3910
Web Site: www.sos.state.oh.us
Filing Fee: $125

Note: All incorporators must sign Articles of Incorporation. Expedited service is also available for an extra fee of $100. Expedited filings should be marked “EXPEDITE” and must be either taken to the Client Service Center, 30 East Broad Street, Lower Level, or mailed to PO Box 1390, Columbus, OH 43216.

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

a. Submit Form 1023 (501(c)(3) organizations) electronically at Pay.gov. Form 1024 (for other 501(c) organizations) should be submitted by mail to:

Note new address: 

Internal Revenue Service
TE/GE Stop 31A Team 105
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: $600 ($275 for IRS Form 1023-EZ)
Form 1024 Filing Fee: $600

Notes: As of January 31, 2020, the IRS requires that Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, be completed and submitted online through Pay.gov. Applicants must have a Pay.gov account and payment of the user fee must be made electronically. There is a 90-day grace period during which the IRS will continue to accept paper versions of Form 1023. Learn more about IRS Form 1023.

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-A.
For more information about this filing, refer to the IRS website.

3. To Obtain Ohio Commercial Activity Tax and Sales Tax Exemptions

Nonprofit organizations are exempt from the commercial activity tax.

501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations are generally exempt from sales taxes. A list of exemptions can be found on the Department of Taxation's website. Sales and use tax blanket exemption certificates (form STEC-B) are to be provided to vendors.

Ohio Department of Taxation
PO Box 530
Columbus, OH 43216-0530

Information: (888) 405-4039
Web Site: https://tax.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/tax/business

4. To Register with the Ohio Attorney General

Charitable organizations that solicit for contributions must register online at the website below.

Information: (800) 282-0515
Web Site: https://charitable.ohioago.gov/
Filing Fee: $0

Annual Filings for Ohio Nonprofit Organizations

1. 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.

Note: Effective for tax years that end July 31, 2020 and later, exempt organizations must now file their annual returns electronically, using an approved IRS 990 e-File provider. Note that some transitional relief is available to 990-EZ filers. In addition, some exceptions apply including when the organization is changing its name, filing a shortened period return due to a change in fiscal year, or has an exemption application pending. Refer to the Form 990 instructions for information on these and other exceptions. To learn more about this electronic filing requirement, read the IRS announcement. For a list of approved IRS 990 e-File providers, refer to the IRS' Modernized e-file Providers list.

2. Ohio Attorney General

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

Office of the Attorney General
Charitable Law Section
150 East Gay Street
23rd Floor
Columbus, OH 43215-3130

Information: (800) 282-0515
Web Site: www.ohioattorneygeneral.gov
Filing Fee: $0-200 (based on assets)

If assets < $5,000: Filing Fee = $0
If assets >= $5,000 and < $25,000: Filing Fee = $50
If assets >= $25,000 and < $50,000: Filing Fee = $100
If assets >= $50,000: Filing Fee = $200

Note: The Annual Report must be filed online at: https://charitable.ohioago.gov/

3. Ohio Secretary of State

Form: Statement of Continued Existence
Due Date: Once every five years, either from the date of incorporation or from the last corporate filing. Organizations should be notified by the Secretary of State when they are required to submit their renewal.

Ohio Secretary of State
PO Box 788
Columbus, OH 43216

Information: (614) 466-3910
Prepay Fax: (614) 485-7045
Web Site: www.sec.state.oh.us
Filing Fee: $25

Note: The Statement of Continued Existence may be filed online at: https://bsportal.ohiosos.gov

Ohio Employment Filings

If the organization will have employees, the following filings are required:

1. To Register with the Ohio Department of Taxation

Complete the online registration for employer withholding.

Ohio Department of Taxation
P.O. Box 182215
Columbus, OH 43218-2215

Information: (888) 405-4089
Fax: (614) 387-2165
Web Site: www.tax.ohio.gov/employer_withholding.aspx

Notes: This registration may also be completed in paper form by completing and filing Application for Registration (Form IT 1) but online registration is recommended.

For more information, refer to the Employer Withholding Table of Contents and the Withholding Tax General Guidelines.

2. To Register with the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services

File the online Employer Registration to receive an unemployment compensation tax account number.

Ohio Department of Job and Family Services
Contribution Section
PO Box 182404
Columbus, OH 43218-2404

Information: (614) 466-2319
Web Site: jfs.ohio.gov/ouc/uctax/registering_as_an_employer.stm

Notes: This registration may also be completed in paper form by completing and filing the Report to Determine Liability.

For more information, refer to the Department of Job and Family Services' Employer Liability web page.

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.

Print this page

Registration & Compliance Services

Hurwit & Associates offers comprehensive compliance and reporting services to nonprofit organizations and charitable fundraisers. We help clients remain in good standing with state corporate, tax, charities and employment offices throughout the U.S.

Learn More
Back To Top