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Exempt Organizations Select Check – Search Tips

Exempt Organizations Select Check (EO Select Check) provides access to three different IRS databases with information about tax-exempt organizations. Each database is produced from computer records and is subject to certain limitations, particularly in the format and arrangement of the entries.

Doing business as

Organizations are listed under the legal name or a “doing business as” name (dba) that is on file with the IRS. No separate listings of common or popular names of organizations are included. Some exceptions to the general rule may appear, however. In the “are eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions” database (formerly called Publication 78), dba names of organizations are not listed.

Searching by name generally produces results where either the organization’s legal name or dba includes any of the search terms. For example, a search for Exempt Organization would return organizations with either “Exempt” or “Organization” in their name. To search by phrase, include the phrase in quotation marks (“Exempt Organization”). Dba names and names of group ruling subordinates are not listed in the “are eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions”  (Pub. 78) database. Search by the legal name of the organization.

Searching - in general

  1. You may only search one database at a time.
  2. You must enter some information in one of the fields to start a search.
  3. Hyperlinks on the search page explain the labeled terms in the application.
  4. The search engine uses an includes search logic; it will search for records in the selected field that include the search term.
  5. To pinpoint a particular organization more precisely, include the name, or part of the name, in quotation marks. For example, to search for Anytown General Hospital, enter "Anytown General Hospital" or "Anytown General".
  6. In the results pages, clicking on the link for each column heading will provide a pop-up explanation for the information in that column.  Clicking on the arrow next to the column heading will reorder the results of that column either alphabetically or numerically.
  7. Fields are not case-sensitive.
  8. When entering an employer identification number, the dash after the first two digits is optional.

Effective searching tips

  1. Avoid common words such as the or Foundation.
  2. Searching for less information may produce better results than searching for a lot of information. If your search is not producing good results, search using fewer terms or fields and then sort your results to pinpoint the result you need. For example, you can focus your search results by sorting by city, state or zip code.
  3. If conducting a series of searches in succession, clear your search screen after each one.
  4. When searching for organizations on the Auto-Revocation List, you can narrow your search to organizations whose names were added to the list during a particular time frame. You can enter the date information in the required DD-MON-YYYY format or by selecting the date range on a calendar. (Note: When you enter the date range, the search results are not inclusive.  Accordingly, if you want to search for organizations whose revocation was posted 12/MON/YYYY you would have to enter a search range of 11/MON/YYYY to 13/MON/YYYY.  Similarly, if you wanted to find organizations with revocation posting dates 10/MON/YYYY, 11/MON/YYYY and 12/MON/YYYY your search range should be 10/MON/YYYY to 13/MON/YYYY.)
  5. If an organization is listed on the Auto-Revocation List, you can search organizations eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions (Pub. 78 data) to see if its tax exemption has been reinstated.
  6. Due to the different structure of foreign addresses, data is sometimes found in an unexpected location. For example, the province or country in which the organization is located is sometimes in the City field in the Auto-Revocation database. Thus, if you are not obtaining expected results, trying searching for information in a different way.