Disaster Relief: Providing Disaster Relief Not Specified in Exemption Application


May an organization provide disaster relief to victims of a particular disaster even though disaster relief was not specified in its exemption application?

Yes. An organization that is qualified under section 501(c)(3) may engage in other activities that accomplish charitable purposes even though those activities were not described in its exemption application, without having to obtain permission from the IRS.  It should report new activities on its annual return.  

The organization may also report these changes to the Exempt Organizations Determinations Office at Internal Revenue Service, P.O. Box 2508, Cincinnati, Ohio  45201; however, such reporting does not relieve the organization from reporting the changes on its annual return.  When reporting new activities, include an employer identification number on all correspondence with the Internal Revenue Service.