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Church Waivers for Refund Claims and Abatement Requests

August 14, 2020

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On July 15, 2020, the IRS issued interim guidance (IG) providing instructions to examiners on how to inform churches of the option to authorize the Service to consider church claims for refund or requests for abatement without following the otherwise applicable procedures of Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 7611. The IRS generally must follow several procedural steps under Section 7611 before it can commence an inquiry or examination of a church.

Section 7611 and the related regulations permit a church to waive the application of these procedures by submitting a written waiver. Absent a waiver, the IRS follows these procedures even if the church initiated the contact. For example, if the IRS is requesting information to verify and process a church’s claim for refund or request for abatement.

As described in the IG, the IRS developed a voluntary written waiver process to allow more expeditious processing of these claims

Annual filings, user fees and electronic filing mandates

July 16, 2020

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Annual filings and tax returns/payments due July 15, 2020

The extended deadline for a variety of information and tax returns and many tax payments is July 15, 2020. If you are unable to meet the July 15 deadline, you may want to review the extension procedures for exempt organization returns and information on the penalties for not filing.

EO user fee changes effective July 1, 2020

Revenue Procedure 2020-5 included user fee changes for certain miscellaneous determination requests submitted on Form 8940 that are effective July 1st.  See Appendix A of Rev. Proc. 2020-5 for a schedule of user fees.

Electronic filing mandate for Forms 990 and 990-PF

Effective for tax years beginning after July 1, 2019, the Taxpayer First Act requires organizations exempt from taxation under section 501(a) to file their annual Form 990 and Form 990-PF returns electronically,

Chambers High Net Worth 2020

July 14, 2020

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Chambers High Net Worth 2020

July 14, 2020

Authored by: BCLP

Chambers & Partners has recognized Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner in the 2020 edition of Chambers High Net Worth Guide. The publication named 10 Private Client and Family Asset Protection lawyers across the globe as leading lawyers in their field.

 The Chambers High Net Worth Guide ranks the top lawyers and law firms for international private wealth. The guide also recommends leading accountancy firms, private banks, wealth managers, trust companies and other professional advisers to HNW and UHNW clients around the world.

FIRM RANKINGS:

Georgia

Private Wealth Law – Band 2

London (Firms)

Private Wealth Law – Band 3

Missouri

Private Wealth Law – Band 1

Russia

Private Wealth Law – Band 3

 

RANKED LAWYERS:

Family/Matrimonial: High Net Worth

UK

Elizabeth Hicks – Band 1

 

Private Wealth Law

GEORGIA

Kimberly Civins – Band 2

Tiffany McKenzie – Up and Coming

LONDON (FIRMS)

Damian Bloom – Band 3

Reshmi

Proposed changes to group exemption letter program, UBTI ‘silo’ rules and more

June 15, 2020

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IRS solicits public comments on proposed changes to group exemption letter program; will temporarily stop accepting requests for group exemption letters on June 17, 2020 

Notice 2020-36 contains a proposed revenue procedure that sets forth updated procedures under which recognition of exemption from federal income tax for organizations described in Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code may be obtained on a group basis for subordinate organizations affiliated with and under the general supervision or control of a central organization. The IRS requests comments on all aspects of the proposed revenue procedure, including applicable grandfather and transition rules. Comments should be submitted on or before August 16, 2020.

Pending publication of the final revenue procedure in the Internal Revenue Bulletin, Rev. Proc. 80-27 continues to apply. However, the IRS will not accept any requests for group exemption letters beginning June 17, 2020, until publication of the final revenue procedure

Treasury, IRS issue final regulations providing relief for certain tax-exempt organizations

May 28, 2020

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The Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service today issued final regulations [lnks.gd]clarifying the reporting requirements generally applicable to tax-exempt organizations.

The final regulations reflect statutory amendments and certain grants of reporting relief announced by the Treasury Department and the IRS in prior guidance to help many tax-exempt organizations generally find the reporting requirements in one place.

Among other provisions, the final regulations incorporate the existing exception from having to file an annual return for certain organizations that normally have gross receipts of $50,000 or less.  That exception was previously announced in Revenue Procedure 2011-15. The regulations also provide that the requirement to report contributor names and addresses on annual returns generally applies only to returns filed by Section 501(c)(3) organizations and Section 527 political organizations.  All tax-exempt organizations must continue to maintain the names and addresses of their substantial contributors in their books

Electronic Form 1023 news, social media reminder and more

April 30, 2020

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Form 1023 Paper Submission Transition Period Expires April 30

As of January 31, 2020, organizations are required to submit Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, electronically online at Pay.gov. The IRS provided a 90-day transition period during which time applicants can continue to submit paper Form 1023 applications. The transition period expires April 30, 2020. The IRS will not accept paper Form 1023 applications postmarked after that date.

The user fee for Form 1023 remains at $600 for 2020. Applicants must pay the user fee through Pay.gov when submitting the form. Payment can be made directly from a bank account or by credit/debit card.

Updated information on Signing Electronically Submitted Form 1023 

An applicant may satisfy the electronic signature requirement for an electronically submitted Form 1023 by including, in the PDF file it uploads as part of its application, a

IRS extends more tax deadlines; EO operations affected during COVID-19 and more

April 14, 2020

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Last month, the IRS announced that certain taxpayers generally have until July 15, 2020, to file and pay federal income taxes originally due on April 15. The IRS has extended this relief to additional returns, tax payments and other actions. As a result, the extensions generally now apply to all taxpayers that have a filing or payment deadline falling on or after April 1, 2020, and before July 15, 2020. The extensions apply to many forms and tax payments made by tax-exempt organizations, including:

  • Form 990-series annual information returns or notices (Forms 990, 990-EZ, 990-PF, 990-BL, 990-N (e-postcard))
  • Forms 8871 and 8872
  • Form 5227
  • Form 990-T
  • Form 1120-POL
  • Form 4720
  • Form 8976

See Notice 2020-23 and Rev. Proc. 2018-58 for more information, including a complete list of affected forms, tax payments and other time-sensitive actions.

IRS operations during COVID-19: mission-critical functions continue

In response to the

U.S. Congress Gives Employers an Incentive to Retain Employees in CARES Act

April 9, 2020

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Section 2301 of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”) , enacted on March 27, 2020, introduces an employee retention tax credit (the “ERC”) designed to incentivize employers affected by the COVID-19 crisis to retain employees.  Subject to certain limitations outlined below, the amount of the credit is 50% of qualified wages paid by an eligible employer, up to a maximum of $10,000 per employee. The ERC is applied against the employer portion of Social Security taxes (but not the employer portion of Medicare taxes) and is a refundable credit. Thus, to the extent the amount of the credit during any calendar quarter exceeds the employer’s applicable employment taxes for such quarter, the excess will be treated as a refundable overpayment under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (the “Code”).  The ERC is applicable to wages paid after March 12, 2020 and before January 1, 2021

U.S. Congressional CARES Act & Nonprofit Organizations

April 1, 2020

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Loan Programs

Small Business Loan Program Expansion – “Paycheck Protection Program”: Provides 100% guarantee for bank loans made to qualifying business/organizations during the period of February 15, 2020 to June 30, 2020.  To qualify, nonprofits must not have more than 500 total full-time and part-time employees.  Nonprofit organizations with more than 500 employees are not eligible for this program. Detailed guidance from the firm on this program can be found here:

Emergency Economic Injury Grants – “Disaster Loans”: Nonprofits with fewer than 500 employees who apply for an economic injury disaster loan with the SBA may receive up to $10,000 as an advance against the loan within 3 days of application if SBA certifies that the entity is eligible.  This is to enable nonprofits to quickly access financial assistance while their loan application is being processed.  Eligibility is based solely on applicant’s credit score.  Funds can be used for payroll

COVID-19 Update – How the CARES Act Affects Tax Benefits Related to Charitable Giving

On Friday, March 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (“CARES Act” or “Act”). The Act was one of several Congressional responses to the COVID-19 emergency and it covered many areas, including the tax benefits related to charitable giving.

Generally, there are limitations on deductions for charitable contributions for both individual and corporate taxpayers based on the taxpayer’s adjusted gross income (“AGI”), in the case of individuals, and taxable income, in the case of corporations. The CARES Act increases the limit on individual taxpayers’ deductions for cash contributions to public charities from 60% of the individual’s AGI to 100% of the individual’s AGI. This increase effectively suspends the limit for individuals in 2020.  For corporate taxpayers, the CARES Act increased the income limits on the deduction for charitable cash contributions from 10% of the corporation’s taxable income to 25% of the corporation’s