Charity Registration Renewal Deadline Extended Amid COVID-19 Emergency

For Pennsylvania charitable organizations whose registration or renewal deadlines fall during April, May, or June 2020, a three-month extension has been announced. Typically, registration renewal applications are required to be postmarked by the 15th day of the 11th month after the close of the organization’s fiscal year. That deadline has now been pushed to the 15th day of the 14th month following the close of the organization’s fiscal year.

While the Pennsylvania Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations (“Bureau”) recommends that organizations renew on time if possible, organizations affected by COVID-19 who fail to meet the deadline will still remain active and may continue to solicit contributions in satisfaction of its charitable purpose in Pennsylvania.

The following table outlines the time frame for charitable organization registrations that are set to expire within the upcoming months:

Charitable organization fiscal year end

Charitable organization renewal date and registration expiration

Requesting extension of deadline and registration to

May 31, 2019

April 15, 2020

July 15, 2020

June 30, 2019

May 15, 2020

August 17, 2020*

July 31, 2019

June 15, 2020

September 15, 2020

* If the renewal due date falls on a weekend or holiday, the actual date will be the next business day. August 15, 2020, is a Saturday. Therefore, the renewal date is extended to Monday, August 17, 2020.

The Bureau went live with its online filing system on March 20.  Even with this extended timeframe, organizations are still encouraged by the Bureau to file Form BCO-10 through the online system (https://www.charities.pa.gov). Just as before this extension was announced, users of the online filing site are to register for a “Keystone Login” account, using a code the Bureau mailed to filers on March 17, 2020. First-time registrations do not require this code.

The online system is not designed to reflect the updated extended deadlines, and as such, filers will be automatically charged late fees for taking advantage of the extension. The Bureau will refund these wrongful late fees directly to the credit card utilized in the transaction. Online filers who submit renewals as of their original deadline will not face this erroneous late fee.

To receive the reimbursement for these late fee charges, organizations must:

1. Find and keep the email message from noreply@gge4mailer.com acknowledging receipt of the online registration and the payment of fee (transaction receipt email).

2. Forward the transaction receipt email to ST-Charity@pa.gov and change the subject line to read “REFUND.”

3. After the Bureau calculates and refunds the late fee, the organization will receive an email with the details of the refund. This email will be sent to the email used with the credit card at time of payment.

Refunds will be processed within 15 business days, plus additional buffer time to allow it to appear on credit card and bank statements. If you have any questions on the updated deadlines or refund payments, please reach out to your Schneider Downs advisor by phone or email, or contact the Bureau at ST-Charity@pa.gov.

You’ve heard our thoughts… We’d like to hear yours

The Schneider Downs Our Thoughts On blog exists to create a dialogue on issues that are important to organizations and individuals. While we enjoy sharing our ideas and insights, we’re especially interested in what you may have to say. If you have a question or a comment about this article – or any article from the Our Thoughts On blog – we hope you’ll share it with us. After all, a dialogue is an exchange of ideas, and we’d like to hear from you. Email us at contactSD@schneiderdowns.com.

Material discussed is meant for informational purposes only, and it is not to be construed as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please note that individual situations can vary. Therefore, this information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.

© 2020 Schneider Downs. All rights-reserved. All content on this site is property of Schneider Downs unless otherwise noted and should not be used without written permission.

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