Chapters/ Councils filing taxes

TU is a publicly supported 501(c)3 organized under a group exemption and because of this the IRS requires the following:

  • Each entity (chapter and council) under the exemption has their own employer identification number (EIN.) If you can’t find yours, look at the top of the Annual Financial Report in the Leaders Only Section or contact volunteer operations staff.
  • Each entity is required to file its own tax forms with the IRS. TU national cannot file on a chapter or council’s behalf.
  • Required forms to file with the IRS (Questions about the correct Form 990 to file? Please visit: or contact volunteer operations staff for more information.


Gross receipts over $50,000 on average over three years?

  • File Form 990 or 990EZ
  • Should you prepare it yourself? These forms are long and sometimes complex, so get help (from an accountant experienced with nonprofit orgs.) if you are not comfortable.
  • Legally, TU national cannot give you advice on how to fill this out.

Gross receipts under $50,000 on average over three years?

  • File Form 990N
  • New short online form
  • Should you prepare it yourself?
  • Yes. It is a very simple form asking for basic information.

The Forms 990N, 990, 990T or 990EZ must be filed by the 15th of the 5th month after your chapter’s fiscal year end. Because TU’s fiscal year ends on September 30, required forms are due to the IRS on February 15. Check with your state tax authorities for local state filing requirements.

There are additional, separate requirements for reporting “unrelated business income.”
If a nonprofit’s gross proceeds from unrelated business income exceed $1,000, that income must be reported to the IRS using Form 990T.

If your chapter or council conducts a revenue generating business, and the gross revenue from that business exceeds $1,000, you should consult with
your chapter’s accountant regarding whether that revenue constitutes unrelated business income.

The most common examples of unrelated business income include advertising income from the sale of ads in newsletters and magazines, revenue generated from fishing trips that are not educational or conservation oriented, and fees collected for the
use of facilities or land owned by the organization where the use of the property is not directly related to the exempt purpose of the organization.

Revenues from raffles, banquets, auctions, and other sales of donated merchandise do not count as unrelated business income.

If you have additional questions about tax filing requirements, please contact volunteer operations staff.
Consequences of not filing: If a chapter or council fails to file the correct form for three years running:

  • Automatic revocation of your exempt status.
  • Officers at time of non-filing cannot be officers in the organization going forward.
  • For TU this means a chapter officer in this situation cannot then become a chapter officer at another chapter, council, NLC or TU Board of Trustees
  • TU national cannot appeal on your behalf.

How to ensure compliance:

  • Send of a copy of your Form 990/990EZ/990T or 990N via email to Nick Halle at TU staff will be tracking this and will be in contact with leadership to ensure all chapters andcouncils file.
  • Please educate your future leaders about this requirement.

For more information, please contact the Volunteer Operations Department.


Does my chapter or council have to file taxes?


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