Your chapters EIN (Employer Identification Number) is used by the IRS to identify your organization, but is much more than that. It’s also how your supporters can find your organization to make tax deductible donations. In this article we will go over some best practices for your EIN number, why it’s important to share with your supporters, and some basics of how nonprofits work.
First and foremost, as a nonprofit organization your tax information, including your EIN is public domain. Which means anyone at any time can look up or request your organizations EIN and tax records (Form 990) for the previous 3 years. In the name of transparency, it’s best to be forthcoming with this information. While not required, some organizations post this information on their website.
There are a number of ways an organization can take donations. And while we won’t go into details on all the potential ways to collect funds, we will highlight why your EIN number relates. Your chapter is legally a subordinate organization of SORBA but you do not share the same EIN. Your organizations EIN is unique to that specific chapter. Where it gets foggy is when you search for an organization based on the name.
Each organization will have SORBA listed first, with their chapter information usually not displayed due to the length of the name. This is a common occurrence in corporate donation matching or funding through a foundation and can lead to selecting the wrong organization to donate to. If the individual or business has your chapters specific EIN number, the search is much easier and more accurate.
This is similar to programs like Amazon Smile. If you search for your chapter by name alone it may be impossible to find. With your chapters EIN that search is much more accurate, ensuring the funds that are intended for your organization go to you. And while these might not seem like huge revenue sources, it all adds up.
Sharing Your EIN
We feel it’s important to have your EIN easily accessible to potential donors. Listing your EIN number on your website and social media accounts makes it far easier to source that information. It also aides in the transparency of your organization, giving donors peace of mind that their money is going towards projects they care about. Make it easy and in turn you will help your organization raise more funds. We have updated the SORBA website to all chapter specific EIN numbers on our Chapters page here.
Where To Go From Here
- Confirm your correct EIN number (if you need help let us know)
- List your EIN on your website
- Make sure all donation portals you have set up are directed to your organization
- Public Disclosure Requirements for Nonprofits
- What’s Public, What’s Private
- Ethics and Accountability for Nonprofits
- Online Tutorial on Public Disclosure Requirements
- The Importance of Your Nonprofit’s EIN