IRS Logo
Print - Click this link to Print this page

IRS processing of exemption applications

Your exemption application may provide enough information for the IRS to issue a determination on your exempt status. Frequently, however, the IRS reviewer will need additional information to complete your application. The reviewer will write a letter requesting the additional information by a specified date.

While You Wait
If you have an annual exempt organization return or notice due while your application for recognition of exempt status is pending with the IRS (including any appeal of a proposed adverse determination), you still must file and indicate that your exemption application is pending. Like other exempt organization returns, these are subject to public disclosure.

If you have unrelated business income of more than $1,000, also file Form 990-T, Exempt Organization Business Income Tax Return.

Your organization should comply with tax law requirements applicable to IRC Section 501(c) tax-exempt organizations. See Publication 557, Tax-Exempt Status for Your Organization, for more information

Incomplete Application or Other Determination Request
If your exemption application or other determination request isn’t substantially complete, we’ll return it with a letter of explanation and any submitted user fee and won’t consider the application on its merits. You must resubmit the complete application (including the missing information) and a new user fee if you want us to consider your request.

IRS Correspondence
If you submit a complete application (Form 1023 or Form 1024), we’ll send you a letter acknowledging we received your application. We send these letters as soon as possible after receiving your application.

If we need additional information to make a determination on any request, we’ll send you a letter requesting that information.

Different/New Application Form Needed
If it appears you should request exemption using a different application form, we’ll let you know and request that you submit the other form. Although you won’t need to resubmit supporting information you already provided, you may have to submit additional information for the new application. If we don’t receive the information by a requested due date, we’ll process your application based on your original submission.

If you’re currently tax exempt and you want to request a change to the paragraph under which your organization is recognized, you must submit a new application package and user fee requesting exemption under the new paragraph.

Return to Life Cycle of a Social Welfare Organization

Return to Life Cycle of a Labor Organization

Return to Life Cycle of an Agricultural or Horticultural Organization

Return to Life Cycle of a Business League (Trade Association)

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 17-Nov-2015