How to Find a Charity’s Compensation


Use this guide as a quick reference to find important information on nonprofit groups from the forms they’re required to file with the Internal Revenue Service.

Most federally tax-exempt groups must complete a 990, a 990-EZ, or a 990-N. Churches and state organizations are exempt. (Foundations must file a 990-PF.)

This guide shows where to find information in the 990, the 990-EZ, and any attached schedules. The 990-EZ is mentioned only where it covers a particular topic.

(The 990-N, filed by tiny groups, is essentially an e-postcard with only the most basic information.)

I want to find out …

… how much a charity pays in salaries, other compensation, and benefits.
    For the total, go to Form 990, Part I, Line 15.
    For a breakdown of these expenses, go to Part IX, Lines 5-10.
    On Form 990-EZ, the total amount is at Part I, Line 12.
… how the IRS defines “key employee.”

The 990 instructions include a three-part test to determine if someone is a key employee. You can find that in “Section A. Officers, Directors, Trustees, Key Employees, and Highest Compensated Employees.”

For purposes of the 990-EZ, a key employee is “any person having responsibilities or powers similar to those of officers, directors, or trustees. The term includes the chief management and administrative officials of an organization (such as an executive director or chancellor). A chief financial officer and the officer in charge of the administration or program operations are both key employees if they have the authority to control the organization’s activities, its finances, or both.”

I want to find out…

… how the IRS defines officer, director, and trustee….READ MORE