Filing amendments for ?religious groups unveiled

BOSTON – Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office last month unveiled amendments to regulations governing the registration and filing requirements for certain religious organizations that double as public charities. More

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Filing amendments for ?religious groups unveiled

Posted 1/9/12

BOSTON – Attorney General Martha Coakley’s office last month unveiled amendments to regulations governing the registration and filing requirements for certain religious organizations that double as public charities.

According to a news release, the regulations will simplify which religious organizations are required to register and submit annual filings with Coakley’s office.

The amendments are expected to become effective soon after a public hearing scheduled for Jan. 10 conducted by the attorney general’s Non-Profit Organizations/Public Charities Division.

The proposed changes would clarify that exemptions from the state’s registration and filing requirements will parallel exemptions from similar federal filing requirements granted by the Internal Revenue Service to certain religious organizations.

The attorney general’s office will waive its registration and filing requirements if an organization has received or is eligible for an exemption from filing Form 990 information returns with the IRS on the basis that it is a church; an integrated auxiliary of a church; an exclusively religious activity of any religious order; or a mission society sponsored by or affiliated with a church, or if more than half of the organization’s activities are conducted in or directed at foreign countries. •

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