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Form 990 Filing Tips: Schedule A (Public Support and Public Charity Classification)

The IRS has received a number of questions about how to report public support and public charity classification on Schedule A, Form 990, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax.

  1. Who must file Schedule A?
  2. What is the purpose of Schedule A?
  3. Should Schedule A be filled out before other parts and schedules of Form 990 or 990-EZ?
  4. What is the public support test for a public charity?  
  5. My organization, a public charity described in section 170(b)(1)(A)(vi), is within the first five years of its existence and files Form 990 or 990-EZ. Is it required to fill out Schedule A Part II?
  6. Is a public charity that files the Form 990-N (e-Postcard) required to file Schedule A? What if the organization becomes no longer publicly supported?
  7. If an organization qualifies as publicly supported for a five-year computation period, does it have any reliance on that status in the following year?
  8. If an organization is considered as publicly supported for its first five years regardless of its actual support during that period, is its support during that period used in determining whether it is publicly supported in its sixth and subsequent years?
  9. My determination letter from the IRS states that my organization is a public charity under sections 509(a)(1) and 170(b)(1)(A)(vi). However, my organization is no longer able to meet the public support test under those sections on Part II of the Schedule A. Can my organization attempt to qualify as a public charity under section 509(a)(2) instead by calculating its public support on Part III of the Schedule A?
  10. My organization is a public charity under sections 509(a)(1) and 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) of the Code, and it received 15 percent of its support from the general public. Because my organization received less than 33 1/3 percent of its support from the general public, how do I show the IRS on the Schedule A that my organization meets the facts and circumstances test?
  11. In 2009, a donor made a pledge to my organization that will be paid in 2009, 2010, and 2011. Should I discount the total pledge to its present value and report this amount as support in 2009 since that is when we received the pledge?
  12. May we report the value of volunteer time as contributions in the public support table?
  13. Should we report in-kind contributions of property as contributions in the public support table? If so, how should these contributions be valued?
  14. If my organization qualifies as a hospital for Schedule A purposes and thus as a public charity, is it required to file Schedule H?
  15. Supporting organizations described in Code section 509(a)(3) are required to answer a number of questions in Schedule A, Part I, line 11. Does the organization’s answer to any of these questions affect its qualification as a supporting organization under section 509(a)(3)?
  16. Should non-monetary support be reported in Part I, line 11h(vii) of Schedule A?
  17. My organization is a 509(a)(3) supporting organization that made grants to multiple supported organizations during the tax year. Do we need to list every one of those supported organizations by name and EIN in Schedule A, Part I, line 11h, or can we just describe those organizations by class?

View and print all Form 990 Schedule A tips (Adobe).

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 11-Dec-2014