Taxes- an income collected for public benefits. Filing of taxations appropriately on a regular basis is a task. There exist many ways through which it can be simplified but an earning individual or organization is liable to pay taxes.
What if you didn't have to pay taxes? That would seem good, right. In today's program, we shall be talking about Tax Exemption and who enjoy this exempt status.
You're with your host Zaina Rafique at DueFlixVoiceFM. We invite such individuals to our programs who have a successful record and have made outstanding achievements in peculiar areas.
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Joining us today as our guest is Monazza Aarfa as spokesperson for InfoTaxSquare.com - An organization which has registered thousands of religious and nonreligious organizations across the United States for US residents and non-United States residents.
Frequently Asked Questions
Could you tell our listeners the basic things about tax exemption? +
Before we talk about Tax Exempt Organizations, it is very necessary to understand the primary concept of Tax Exemption.
Tax exemption is the partial or complete removal of a liability to pay money to the government that would otherwise be imposed upon persons, property, income or large transactions. Some tax systems specifically exclude from income items that the system is trying to encourage. This
Is tax exemptions the same as tax deduction? +
This is a common misconception. Tax Exemption must not be confused with Tax Deduction. Tax Deduction is exclusion of a certain part liable to taxation, whereas tax exemption refers to complete eradication of liability to pay taxes.
Taxes are levied for Public Interest. What could be the reason that some organizations are granted Tax Exemption? +
There are a number of reasons for tax exemption being granted to a non-profit organization. The most common and primary reason is to encourage socially helpful activities or those who serve the good purpose to the society. In some localities, military veterans claim a property tax exemption.
Are all Nonprofits Tax Exempt Organizations? +
One must understand that not all nonprofit organizations are tax exempt. There are some activities for which a charitable non profit could be taxed with most of such activities being those that generate unrelated Business income.
On the other hand, some groups and Organizations deliberately choose not to apply for tax exempt status as they're functioning on a small and temporary basis and applying is usually a detailed process.
One must also understand that the terms Nonprofit and Tax Exempt stand on two different poles to define an organization.
Is there a way to categorize types of tax exempt Organizations? Could you tell us which are those? +
Organizations have been categorized on the basis of the nature of their tax exemptions and the extension of this status that they enjoy.
A religious purpose is one of the seven exempt purposes specified in Section 501(C)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
501(C)(3) religious organizations include churches, conventions, and associations of churches and other entities whose main purpose is the propagation or the advancement of religion.
On the contrary, Non Religious Nonprofits refer to those that are charitable trusts and do not restrict themselves to any particular religion, community or group of people. They extend basic human needs and rights to the people. They generate income not in the form of religious funds or donations, but also as related or unrelated business income.
The broad divisions or types included in Non Religious Nonprofits are Political, Charitable and Private Organizations and those mentioned under 501(c)(3).
What are Political Organizations? What are the regulations regarding their functioning? +
A political organization subject to section 527 is a party, committee, association or other firm which primarily functions for political purposes which include making contributions for campaigns etc.
Regulations about the functioning of a Political nonprofit are mentioned in 501(c)(4). Some of their activities face restrictions whereas some are unrestricted to a certain extent when it comes to maintaining the tax exempt status.
You have mentioned 501(c)(3) in this program before. Could you guide us what is it all about? +
A 501(c)(3) organization is a corporation, trust, unincorporated association or of any other type, exempt from federal income tax under section 501(c)(3) Of Title 26 of the United States Code. It is one of the 29 types of 501(c) nonprofit organizations in the USA.
It's a declarative medium through which the IRS gives permission or qualification to an organization for being tax exempt. It's a code that defines what must be followed to get the status of tax exempt.
This category further divides into two categories - Public Charity and Private Foundation.
A Public Charity is identified by IRS as "one that normally receives a substantial part of its income, directly or indirectly from the general public or from the government."
Whereas a Private Foundation, sometimes called a non-operating foundation receives most of its income from investments and endowments. This income is used to make grants to other organizations, rather than being disbursed directly for charitable activities.
What are the rules that 501(c)(3) organizations need to abide by? +
There are certain rules regarding the functioning of these organizations. I'll point out few major
Most of the areas related to taxes carry some undeniable flaws with them that need to be unraveled. Do Tax Exempt Organizations have flaws as well? +
The functioning of Tax Exempt Organizations may be stained with some flaws. These loopholes are often ignored by the concerned authorities regarding the limit of their tax exemptions. There may be a lack of evidence on paper and this can be a flaw misused by the Nonprofits themselves. When audits are conducted, there may not be a fair play presented. Some nonprofits tend to use donations and incomes for the personal benefits of their employees like investment in assets and so on.
However, the IRS ensures to its best that Tax Exempt Organizations function fairly. For understanding the dos and don'ts of Tax Exempt Status, it is always advisable to seek help from an experienced attorney and keep your tax exempt status maintained throughout.
I agree with you, Monazza. We are no professional advisors. We just bring facts to your table so that you're aware about such topics and you know what's true and what is not. Our listeners must know that we are not affiliated with the IRS.
IRS acts as a source for our inspiration to bring information to you in the most simple, transparent and truthful way.
Tax paying and tax filing is an issue of concern for any organization. Those who enjoy the tax exempt status should not be any different. Whether you pay tax or not, it is a mutual responsibility to ensure the smooth, clear and right flow of taxes within the system. And the first step in doing so is gaining accurate information about the same.
We hope that this program was interesting to you. I thank our guest Monazza for being with us today and leaving us with a lot of knowledge. This is your host Zaina Rafique signing off, at