Under the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (PPA), the rules for public disclosure of the Form 990-T by public charities and private foundations became identical to those for Form 990.
Which forms are affected?
Any Form 990-T filed after August 17, 2006.
What are the public disclosure requirements?
In general, under public disclosure laws, charities must provide any Form 990 (or 990-PF)—and now, Form 990-T—filed within the past three years to individuals requesting such information if the request is made either in person or in writing. Copies of all schedules and attachments should be included. (Public charities may redact names and addresses of donors from Schedule B of Form 990.) If a request for any of these documents is made in person, an organization must generally provide a copy of the requested documents on the day of the request. If the request is in writing (including e-mail) an organization must respond within 30 days of the request. The organization may charge the requestor a reasonable fee for the cost of copying (currently defined by the IRS as $.20 per page) plus postage.
An alternative to providing hard copies of requested documents is to make copies of these documents “widely available.” For example, an organization may provide the document free of charge in PDF format on the organization’s website. Then, if the organization receives requests for the information, it can simply direct the requestor to the documents on the website.
What information can be redacted from the Form 990-T prior to disclosure?
Generally, information may be redacted if the public availability of the information would adversely affect the charity. In particular, information relating to a trade secret, patent, process, style of work, or apparatus of the organization could be redacted if the Treasury Secretary determines that public disclosure would adversely affect the charity.
The information provided in this resource is based on our continuing analysis of the Pension Protection Act. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information. Due to the complexity of the PPA and the fact that many of these provisions introduce issues that are new to the Internal Revenue Code, this information is subject to change. Please check back here and on the IRS website (www.irs.gov ) for updates. This information is not a substitute for expert legal, tax, or other professional advice and we strongly encourage grantmakers and donors to work with their counsel to determine the impact of the PPA and related guidance on their particular situations. This information may not be relied upon for the purposes of avoiding any penalties that may be imposed under the Internal Revenue Code.
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