The Department of the Treasury and the IRS, on August 9, issued their 2013-2014 Priority Guidance Plan. This plan entails 324 tax law projects that are priorities for the allocation of the government's tax law administrative resources during the coming year, including 14 tax-exempt organizations law projects and four charitable giving law projects. The priority projects include guidance for hospitals, social welfare organizations, private foundations, donor-advised funds, and supporting organizations.

What You Need to Know

Here are the tax-exempt organizations and charitable giving law projects that are a priority for the Department of Treasury and the IRS in the coming year.

Tax-Exempt Organizations Law Projects

  • Rules for social welfare organizations. Guidance as to the IRC Section 501(c)(4) rules pertaining to measurement of an organization's primary activity and whether it is operated primarily for the promotion of social welfare, including guidance relating to political campaign intervention.
  • Grantor/Contributor reliance. Issuance of revenue procedures updating grantor and contributor reliance criteria for income tax and public charity classification.
  • EO Select Check. Issuance of revenue procedure to update Rev. Proc. 2011-33 for EO Select Check
  • Hospital regulations. Promulgation of final regulations on the additional requirements for tax exemption for charitable hospitals. (Proposed regulations have been issued.)
  • Excise tax for CHNA failures. Issuance of regulations regarding the return and filing requirements for the excise tax for community health needs assessment (CHNA) failures by charitable hospitals.
  • Supporting organizations. Promulgation of additional guidance on supporting organizations.
  • Donor-advised funds. Publication of proposed regulations regarding the donor-advised fund rules enacted in 2006.
  • Information returns. Guidance on information returns filed by exempt organizations.
  • Disclosure to state officials. Promulgation of final regulations concerning the IRS's authority to disclose exempt organization information to state officials. (Proposed regulations have been issued.)
  • Church audits. Publication of final regulations relating to church tax inquiries and examinations. (Proposed regulations have been issued.)
  • Program-related investments. Issuance of regulations concerning program-related investments. (Proposed regulations have been issued).
  • Private foundation investment in a partnership. Issuance of guidance regarding a private foundation's investment in a partnership in which disqualified persons are also partners.
  • Unrelated business income of VEBAs. Publication of regulations explaining the computation of unrelated business income of exempt voluntary employees' beneficiary associations.
  • Fractions rule. Issuance of regulations concerning the unrelated business income "fractions rule."

Charitable Giving Law Projects

  • Charitable deduction rules. Publication of final regulations concerning the charitable deduction recordkeeping, substantiation, and appraisal requirements. (Proposed regulations were previously issued.)
  • Donee substantiation rules. Publication of regulations regarding donee substantiation of charitable contributions.
  • Basis of CRTs. Publication of regulations concerning the uniform basis of charitable remainder trusts.
  • Adjustments to prototype CRT forms. Issuance of guidance regarding adjustments to the previously issued forms for charitable remainder trusts.

What You Need to Do Now

Tax-exempt organizations should be reviewing the priority guidance projects and determining if any of their activities may be impacted by new developments in these areas. These organizations should consult with their advisors to monitor new guidance in the coming year that may directly influence their activities.