IRS Announces Help for Orgs with Revoked Tax-Exempt Status

June 14, 2011 ( - The Internal Revenue Service announced that approximately 275,000 organizations under the law have automatically lost their tax-exempt status because they did not file legally required Form 990 annual reports for three consecutive years.

The agency said it believes the vast majority of these organizations are defunct; however, it is offering help to any existing organizations in applying for reinstatement of their tax-exempt status.  

The IRS issued guidance on how organizations can apply for reinstatement of their tax-exempt status, including retroactive reinstatement in Notice 2011-44.   In addition, the IRS announced transition relief for certain small tax-exempt organizations – those with annual gross receipts of $50,000 or less for 2010 – that were made subject to the new “postcard” filing under the PPA in Notice 2011-43  

The relief allows eligible small organizations to regain their tax-exempt status retroactive to the date of revocation and pay a reduced application fee of $100 rather than the typical $400 or $850 fee. More information is in Revenue Procedure 2011-36.  

The list of organizations whose tax-exempt status has been revoked for failing to meet their filing requirement, which will be available on the IRS Web site at, includes each organization’s name, Employer Identification Number (EIN) and last known address. It is searchable by state. It also includes the effective date of the automatic revocation and the date it was posted to the list.   

The IRS said it will update the list monthly to include additional organizations that lose their tax-exempt status.  

Existing organizations that seek to have their tax-exempt status reinstated must complete an application and pay a user fee regardless of whether they were originally required to file such an application.