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Fact Sheet: Optional Expedited Processing of Certain 501(c)(4) Exemption Applications


Interim Guidance issued December 23, 2013, (TEGE-07-1213-24, Expansion of Optional Expedited Process for Certain Exemption Applications Under Section 501(c)(4) extends expedited treatment to all applicants for 501(c)(4) status that meet certain criteria and establishes a framework for processing by the EO Determinations Unit and EO Technical Unit.

This Guidance is issued in the interest of effective and efficient tax administration and transparent and consistent review of applications.

  • Eligibility for Optional Expedited Processing
    The new Interim Guidance, issued on December 23, 2013, extends optional expedited processing to all 501(c)(4) applicants whose applications indicate that the organization may be involved in political campaign intervention or in providing private benefit to a political party and that otherwise do not present any issue with regard to exempt status. Applications that present issues other than potential political campaign intervention and private benefit to a political party will be developed further and are not eligible for optional expedited processing.
  • Notice of Optional Expedited Processing
    The IRS will send a letter (Letter 5228 (9-13)) to eligible applicants offering optional expedited processing. The letter explains that applicants may choose to make representations under penalty of perjury regarding their past, current and anticipated future political campaign intervention and social welfare activity.
  • Processing of Applications under the Optional Expedited Process
    Applicants who are able to and who choose to make those representations will receive a favorable determination letter within one month of the IRS's receipt of the signed representations.
  • Review of Pending Applications under the Regular Process
    If an applicant does not opt for expedited processing, the organization's application will be reviewed under the regular process. The IRS will look at all the facts and circumstances to determine if the organization primarily engages in activities that promote social welfare.
  • Review of  Proposed Adverse Rulings
    If a proposed adverse ruling is issued, the applicant may file a protest and request a conference with EO Technical pursuant to Rev. Proc.2014-9 and review by the IRS Office of Appeals pursuant to Interim Guidance Memo TEGE-07-0514-0012, Appeals Office Consideration of All Proposed Adverse Rulings Relating to Tax Exempt Status from EO Technical by Request.

Address questions to the Director, Exempt Organizations, Rulings & Agreements, TE/GE.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 13-Oct-2015