Form 990-PF

Form 990-PF: Return of Private Foundation or Section 4947(a)(1) Nonexempt Charitable Trust Treated as a Private Foundation

Organizations that operate private foundations or claim private foundation status (including charitable trusts treated as private foundations) must file Form 990-PF to figure their tax based on investment income and report charitable distributions and activities.

What is Form 990-PF?

Form 990-PF is an annual information return used by private foundations to report their charitable distributions and activities, figure the tax based on investment income, and serves as a substitute for the section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trust’s income tax return when the trust has no taxable income. Must be filed by exempt private foundations, taxable private foundations, organizations claiming private foundation status, and those making a section 507(b) termination. Other section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts may need to file Form 990 or 990-EZ along with Schedule A (Form 990 or 990-EZ).

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IRS Form 990-PF – Who Needs to Fill It Out?

Form 990-PF must be filled out by a range of organizations, including exempt/taxable private foundations, organizations that have applied for exempt status, those making an election under section 41(e)(6)(D)(iv), those making a section 507(b) termination and section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts treated as private foundations. Organizations that are section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts, but not treated as private foundations, still must include the financial and other information of any disregarded entity on their Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Step-by-Step: Form 990-PF Instructions For Filling Out the Document

Filling out form 990-PF requires distributing and reporting an organization’s charitable contributions and activities, in effort to figure the organization’s tax based on investment income. Those who need to file Form 990-PF include exempt, taxable, and section 4947(a)(1) private foundations, as well as organizations using section 507(b) termination. Disregarded entities owned by the foundation, as specified in Regulations sections 301.7701-1 through 3, must also be reported on the foundation’s return. Upon completion of the form, section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts not treated as private foundations will then have to file Form 990 or Form 990-EZ, along with other required schedules.

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Below, we present a table that will help you understand how to fill out Form 990-PF.

Information for Form 990-PF Details
Charitable Contributions Report contributions and activities
Filing Requirements Exempt, taxable, section 4947(a)(1) private foundations, etc.
Disregarded Entities Report entities owned by the foundation
Section 4947(a)(1) Trusts File Form 990 or Form 990-EZ
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Do You Need to File Form 990-PF Each Year?

Yes – Form 990-PF must be filed each year by certain exempt and taxable private foundations, including organizations that agree to private foundation status and those that claim private foundation status without having applied for exempt status. Other section 4947(a)(1) nonexempt charitable trusts are not required to file Form 990-PF but may need to file Form 990, Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax, or Form 990-EZ, Short Form Return of Organization Exempt From Income Tax. With either of these forms, the trust must also file Schedule A (Form 990 or 990-EZ), Public Charity Status and Public Support, and other required schedules.

Download the official IRS Form 990-PF PDF

On the official IRS website, you will find a link to download Form 990-PF. However, to make it easier for you, we are providing the link in our article, which comes directly from the official website! Click to download: Form 990-PF


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