IRS Announces Expedited Approval Process for New Charities in Light of Hurricane

IRS Announces Expedited Approval Process for New Charities in Light of Hurricane

News story posted in Information Release on 7 September 2005| 1 comments
audience: National Publication | last updated: 18 May 2011
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Summary

The IRS has launched an expedited review and approval process for new organizations seeking tax-exempt status so that they can provide relief for victims of Hurricane Katrina. The organizations may apply for tax-exempt status by filing IRS Form 1023 and writing at the top of the form "Disaster Relief, Hurricane Katrina." The IRS also directs new groups to obtain from its Web site Publication 3833, "Disaster Relief: Providing Assistance Through Charitable Organizations," which provides guidance on the application process.
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IR-2005-93

Date: Sep. 6, 2005

IRS Expedites Charity Applications, Urges Use of Existing
Charities

The IRS has launched (IR-2005-93) an expedited review and approval process for new organizations seeking tax-exempt status so that they can provide relief for victims of Hurricane Katrina. The organizations may apply for tax-exempt status by filing IRS Form 1023 and writing at the top of the form "Disaster Relief, Hurricane Katrina." The IRS also directs new groups to obtain from its Web site Publication 3833, "Disaster Relief: Providing Assistance Through Charitable Organizations," which provides guidance on the application process.


Sept. 6, 2005

WASHINGTON -- The Internal Revenue Service will provide an expedited review and approval process for new organizations seeking tax-exempt status in order to provide relief for victims of Hurricane Katrina. However, the agency encourages people to use existing organizations currently working on immediate aid efforts.

New organizations should apply for tax-exempt status by filing IRS Form 1023, available at www.irs.gov, and write at the top of the form "Disaster Relief, Hurricane Katrina." The IRS will give such applications expedited attention to ensure they meet legal requirements.

"We want to make sure we do all we can to help new charitable organizations get up and running so they can begin providing the assistance the victims of this terrible disaster so desperately need," said IRS Commissioner Mark W. Everson. "Just as we did after September 11, 2001, we will put these applications at the head of the queue and turn them around promptly."

Use of existing charitable organizations is encouraged because such organizations, including churches, are frequently able to administer relief programs more efficiently than newly formed organizations, because they already have fund-raising and distribution infrastructures in place.

The web site of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the U.S. Government's main Web portal, www.FirstGov.gov, offer lists of organizations that provide support to victims of Hurricane Katrina.

However, the IRS anticipates new charities will form to address the numerous and more specific needs of the disaster victims. The IRS will continually update its on-line search feature that allows taxpayers to determine if a charity has IRS-approved tax-exempt status.

In addition to Form 1023 for applying for recognition for tax exemption, the IRS also offers Publication 3833, Disaster Relief: Providing Assistance Through Charitable Organizations, which provides guidance on the application process. This publication is also available on the IRS web site.

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IRS rushes to approve new "huricane" charities

Are they serious? This is likely to be about as bad a decision as the IRS has ever made. To open the candy store in the midst of all the emotion associated with this disaster is too tempting. There are a host of established and tested national and regional charites who have proven track records of being able to support the unmet needs for a crisis like this. The IRS was ill-advised to take this action.

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