The New England Not-For-Profit Accounting Advisor

Advisory Committee Recommends Changes to the Form 990

Posted by Brenda Booth on Wed, Jul 22, 2015 @ 02:01 PM

The IRS Advisory Committee on Tax Exempt and Governmental Agencies (ACT) recently made recommendations for how the IRS can modify the Form 990 to improve its utility. In its 2015 Report of Recommendations to the IRS, the ACT asked for mandatory electronic filing of the Form 990 series and that the IRS collect additional information from entities filing the Form 990-N, among other updates to the annual informational filing series for not-for-profit organizations.
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Tags: Brenda Booth, Form 990

Scrutinize This: Top Audit Risk Points for Not-for-Profits

Posted by Amanda Jenks on Tue, Jul 21, 2015 @ 02:11 PM

Users of not-for-profit financial statements want transparency, and emerging reporting requirements aim to provide it. Recent updates from the federal government and from Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) require more visibility into how not-for-profit organizations manage their resources. Not-for-profits need to monitor these updates and what they mean not only for their current year-ends, but for future reporting practices. Several requirements effective now and with impending effective dates will likely be key points for the auditor of your financial statements.
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Tags: audit, Not-for-Profits, audit risk

How to Triage a Website Breach

Posted by John Robichaud on Thu, Jul 9, 2015 @ 09:16 AM

Your organization’s website can be a dangerous tool if it falls into the wrong hands. Unauthorized users may use the reputation of your not-for-profit organization to promote their spam websites, or they may distribute malware through your website to access sensitive information about your organization, its shareholders and its website users.

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Tags: John Robichaud, cybersecurity, triage a website breach

Specialization Matters: Small Employee Benefit Plan Audit Practices More Likely to Produce Deficient Audits

Posted by Kevin Petrosino on Mon, Jun 22, 2015 @ 06:00 PM

Findings from a recent Department of Labor Report, Assessing the Quality of Employee Benefit Plan Audits: 2014 Audit Report suggest a strong correlation between the number of employee benefit plan audits a firm performs and audit quality. At 76%, audit deficiency rates among firms that performed one or two audits per year were almost twice as high as the deficiency rate of the report’s population as a whole, which registered at 39%. Deficient audits affected $653 billion in plan assets and 22.5 million participants.

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Tags: employee benefit plan, Kevin Petrosino

Tight State and Local Budgets May Signal Bad News for Not-for-Profits

Posted by Carole A. Budyak on Fri, Jun 19, 2015 @ 09:03 AM

Not-for-profit organizations may be called upon for additional payments and taxes as state and local governments weigh solutions for their budgets. These organizations are often exempt from paying property tax and may become targets for proposed budget solutions in part because of their collective size. In many metropolitan areas, not-for-profit organizations own a significant portion of the city’s property. Boston has roughly 50% of its property in tax-exempt hands. Estimates for New Orleans are even higher, with 67% of the city’s property exempt from taxation.

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Tags: state and local tax issues, Carole Budyak

Safe Harbor Expanded for 501(c)(3) Bond-Financed Buildings

Posted by Craig Klein on Thu, May 28, 2015 @ 02:14 PM

The IRS recently updated its guidance for not-for-profit organizations benefiting from tax-exempt bonds. IRS Notice 2014-67 loosens up requirements related to private business use of 501(c)(3) bond financed facilities. The changes are somewhat directed to address healthcare Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) participating in the Medicare Shared Savings Program. However the expanded safe harbor has broader applicability within the not-for-profit sector.

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Tags: Craig Klein, 501(c)(3)

FASB Proposes Delay of New Revenue Recognition Standard

Posted by Mike Burns on Wed, May 27, 2015 @ 09:07 AM

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) recently proposed a one-year delay to its revenue recognition changes. For not-for-profit organizations, this would mean that the revenue recognition update would take effect for public entities in calendar year 2018 and in calendar year 2019 for nonpublic entities. Originally, public business entities, certain not-for-profit organizations and employee benefit plans were to adopt the new standards for interim and annual reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2016. All other entities were to adopt for annual reporting periods beginning after December 15, 2017 and interim periods within annual reporting periods after December 15, 2018.

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Tags: Revenue Recognition Standard, FASB, Mike Burns

Not-For-Profits Brace for Enhanced Disclosures and Reporting Requirements

Posted by Tracey McDonald on Fri, May 15, 2015 @ 09:33 AM

Changes are on the way for how not-for-profit organizations classify net assets and report their statement of activities, cash flows and liquidity. The updates come as part of the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB)’s exposure draft of the proposed accounting standards update, Presentation of Financial Statements of Not-for-Profit Entities. Provisions outlined in the update reflect recommendations from the FASB’s Not-for-Profit Advisory Committee (NAC) as well as feedback from stakeholders. Stakeholders identified the following areas for change because of either diversity of practice under current U.S. generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) or because of the complexity involved in the current reporting requirements.

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Tags: reporting requirements, FASB

Top 5 Recent Tax Developments Affecting Not-For-Profit Organizations

Posted by Brenda Booth on Wed, Apr 29, 2015 @ 12:30 PM

The tax environment can change year to year or even month to month. New risks emerge as others become less of a threat to your not-for-profit organization. To stay in compliance with reporting requirements and reduce the potential for tax liabilities, your organization needs to keep a pulse on the new developments. Over the past nine months, regulatory changes, court cases and fraudulent activity emerged that may have an immediate effect on your organization. As a result, your organization should review these items carefully to determine if changes need to be made to your operations.

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Tags: tax, Brenda Booth, not-for-profit

Seven Resources to Identify New Board Members

Posted by David Brown on Wed, Apr 29, 2015 @ 09:04 AM

Who sits on your board of directors makes a big difference to your not-for-profit. Composition is important; diversity can challenge your not-for-profit to embrace the complexity of the community it serves. Board complexity can also lead to untapped avenues of support for your organization’s tax-exempt purpose. Well-connected board members can assist with fundraising efforts and spreading the word about your not-for-profit’s mission and services.

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Tags: David Brown, board members