As part of an ongoing effort to improve service for the tax-exempt community, the Internal Revenue Service has revised Form 1023 to allow electronic filing for the first time.

Help for Charities

To help charities apply for Section 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, the IRS has revised Form 1023, Application for Recognition of Exemption Under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, and its instructions, it added in a news release.

“Filing electronically reduces errors, and we believe this will help provide a smoother application process for those seeking tax exemption,” said Tammy Ripperda, Commissioner of the IRS Tax Exempt and Government Entities division in the news release. “As we’ve seen with the 1023-EZ, we believe this change will help with application processing time and help with our wider efforts to improve our work with the tax-exempt community.”


The IRS expects the electronic Form 1023 benefits to mirror those realized when Form 1023-EZ went online in 2014. IRS statistics show the 1023-EZ improved application processing time for both the Form 1023 and 1023-EZ while maintaining similar approval and rejection rates between the two forms, it stated in the news release.

Beginning Jan. 31, 2020, applications for recognition of exemption on Form 1023 must be submitted electronically online at The IRS will provide a 90-day grace period during which it will continue to accept paper versions of Form 1023 (Rev. 12-2017).

The required user fee for Form 1023 will remain $600 for 2020. Applicants must pay the fee through when submitting the form. Payment can be made directly from a bank account or by credit or debit card, the IRS news release stated.

Stay Updated

Updates about Form 1023 can be obtained by subscribing to Exempt Organizations Update, a free e-Newsletter from the IRS Exempt Organizations’ office. EO Update provides information on tax policy, services, and information that’s important to tax-exempt organizations including:

  • New forms, guidance, and other publications
  • Changes and additions to the IRS Charities and Nonprofits webpage
  • Upcoming IRS training and outreach events

Additional information on how to apply for IRS recognition of tax-exempt status is available:

Source: Internal Revenue Service