FAQs About the Suspense of Modernized e-File (MeF) Operations for Certain Tax-Exempt Organizations Filings
1. Does the suspense in MeF operations affect my organization?
Organizations that electronically file Forms 990, 990-EZ, 990-PF and 1120- POL and have filing due dates (or first extended due date) on January 17 and February 15, 2012 will be affected by the suspension of MeF operations. Organizations not required to file electronically will be able to file a paper form.
2. My organization is required to file form 990-N. Will I be able to file my e-postcard in January or February?
The “e-postcard” filing system will not be affected by the suspension of MeF operations.
3. Why did the IRS decide to suspend the MeF operations for January and February 2012?
The IRS is suspending MeF filing in order to facilitate the systems and programming changes for the 2011 tax year.
4. My Form 990-EZ is due January 17, 2012. Will I be required to file a Form 8868, Application for Extension of Time to File an Exempt Organizations Return?
The IRS has extended to March 30, 2012 the filing due date for tax-exempt organizations whose due date (or first extended due date) for Filing Forms 990, 990-EZ, 990-PF or 1120-POL falls on January 17, 2012 or February 15. You are not required to file a Form 8868 if you file by March 30, 2012. However, you may request an extension of time to file beyond March 30, 2012, by filing Form 8868. In the case of an organization that has already obtained an automatic three-month extension that ends during the suspension period, the IRS will grant the organization an additional 3-month extension if the organization properly completes and files Form 8868 by its extended due date An organization that has already received two 3-month extensions, the second of which ends during the suspension period, may not request a further extension.
5. Will my organization be subject to penalties if it doesn’t request an extension but files by March 30?
No penalties will be imposed for failure to file if you file by the delayed filing deadline of March 30, 2012. However, if your organization has already received two 3-month extensions, you should attach a Reasonable Cause Statement to your return in order to avoid receiving a system-generated penalty notice for late filing. You can find a Reasonable Cause Statement in Appendix A of Notice 2012-4.
6. If my organization has already received two extensions, can it still avoid late filing penalties if it files by the March 30, 2012 extended due date?
Yes. If you have already received an automatic 3-month extension and a second 3-month extension, you cannot receive a third extension, but may file by the March 30, 2012 extended due date without a late filing penalty. Some organizations generally required to file electronically that have already obtained two three-month filing extensions may be uncomfortable with taking advantage of the late filing penalty relief provided in this notice. In that circumstance the organization may file its return on paper.