The Internal Revenue Service features an Exempt Organization Select Check page at its website for people seeking charities and nonprofit organizations with 501c3 tax status. Tax-deductible organizations are found by using its search tool, and users can also find out which organizations lost tax-exempt status. The Exempt Organization Select Check replaces IRS publication 78. Alternatively, GuideStar offers a free comprehensive online listing of nonprofit tax-exempt organizations listed with the IRS, and organizations are categorized into specific interest groupings.
The same data included in IRS publication 78 is included in Exempt Organizations Select Check, but users now have expanded search capabilities. The IRS has added the ability to search by organization name, employer identification number, location and tax deduction status. The database is updated monthly, excluding January, and data received from IRS 990-N forms is updated weekly. Categories in the GuideStar database include arts, culture and humanities, environment and animals, human services and public, societal benefit. Clicking a category leads users to sub-categories that contain profiles of various organizations.
Online data listings of nonprofit organizations provide potential donors with current information that is useful for determining if donations are eligible for tax exemptions. IRS and GuideStar listings also help donors find legitimate charities that support a wide range of worthy causes. Patrons can use the information to contact organizations and ask questions before sending money.