An Integration to Streamline Internal Document Management Workflows

Cover-Blog-Crisis
THE ISSUE
Automating Production
of Certificates of Excellence
With a fast-growing network of over 1500 volunteers, Crisis Text Line wanted to recognize their volunteer’s outstanding crisis response efforts. As part of expanding the volunteer onboarding process, Crisis Text Line wanted to speed up the creation of two kinds of certificates; one for graduation from a 34-hour crisis response training program, and another for the completion of a year’s worth of service. To do this, the nonprofit needed a way to automatically generate certificates that was simple, flexible, and easy to integrate with their volunteer database and computer network.

Crisis Text Line is the first national 24/7 crisis support line that does crisis intervention all through text message. With 20 million text messages in 3 years and 8 active rescues a day, Crisis Text Line needed a system with the capacity to keep up with the speed, growth, and the critical nature of their operations. Crisis Text Line had used open-source PDF libraries in the past, but now they wanted to find a way to automatically generate a certificate that was simple, flexible, and easy to integrate with their volunteer database and computer.

THE SOLUTION
PDFfiller’s API for
Filling PDFs
After identifying PDFfiller’s API as a tool with the ideal feature set, Crisis Text Line created a new integration with the capacity to streamline all kinds of internal document management workflows, including tools to automate document filling, signature collection, and custom branding.

To start the process of automatically filling certificates, Crisis Text Line uses PDFfiller to create a base template embedded with the signature of the granting organization and with fillable fields for volunteer data. Then, using a pre-determined trigger, the volunteer names and the date of course completion are sent in a data call for automatic filling via the API. For the recipients of one-year certificates, Crisis Text Line also sends the number of conversations the volunteers have taken, as well as the number of hours they’ve spent in those conversations.

Once the certificate is automatically filled with data by PDFfiller’s API, Crisis Text Line gets a link to the hosted version of the PDF and sends it to the volunteers in a congratulations email they receive when they’ve completed the program. It’s that simple! Now that this initial part of the process is complete, Crisis Text Line can take the next step of using PDFfiller’s API to automatically send out their certificates.

THE BENEFITS OF
USING PDFfiller
A Flexible Tool and a
Developer Focus
Saving Time & Money

Using PDFfiller’s API for automated certificate filling has picked up the pace of production, enabling Crisis Text Line to generate around 300-500 certificates a month. The process for the creation of both types of certificates is completely automated, and essentially runs itself. With the API integration in place, Crisis Text Line can easily meet their future goal of accommodating triple the current number of volunteers.

We knew that this was a tool that would do something quickly for us, we were able to build on top of PDFfiller very quickly and so it worked. We operate very much like a Startup in that when we need a problem solved right now, we pick the very best thing.

— Chris Johnson, CTO, Crisis Text Line
Easy Customization

As an organization with in-house technical capacity and a creative, do-it-yourself mindset, It was important to Crisis Text Line to identify a technology that was easy to work with. They were particularly drawn to PDFfiller for its flexibility and the minimal time and effort investment required to get a system ready to go into production.

PDFfiller Support has been extremely responsive to each of my requests, usually responding back within an hour or two of me reaching out, each time with responses that have succinctly answered my quandaries.

— Toshiro Kida, engineer, Crisis Text Line

 

Responsive Technical Support

PDFfiller’s technical support team is committed to working with Crisis Text Line to come up with solutions that meet their needs, in particular a secure and simple authentication mechanism. In providing assistance with this feature, and during the overall onboarding process, PDFfiller was able to respond to the needs of Crisis Text Line quickly and efficiently.

PDFfiller for
Crisis Text Line:
Building a Better Solution

As Crisis Text Line’s team of volunteers grows, PDFfiller can help them respond to new automation challenges. While their current application is fairly simple – filling and retrieval of PDF certificates – the feature set of PDFfiller’s API will allow for the automation of other document management workflows as the need arises.

More importantly, PDFfiller is already positioned to meet the needs of organizations that work with other kinds of online business management tools. Crisis Text Line currently plans to use Salesforce as a customer relationship management tool. CTO Chris Johnson was excited to learn that a PDFfiller Salesforce app already exists that allows Salesforce users to easily edit, redact and sign PDF documents without ever leaving the Salesforce platform.

According to Crisis Text Line, the graduation and recognition certificates play an important role in recruiting, as well as creating a unified and proud volunteer network. The application of PDFfiller’s API for certificate creation is a reflection of Crisis Text Line’s belief in using data science and technology to make crisis intervention faster and more accurate. Working with PDFfiller is making it easier for Crisis Text Line to recognize volunteer excellence, which in turn is helping Crisis Text Line build better solutions to support those in crisis.

For the complete paper, click on the link below:

pdf  PDFfiller & Crisis Text Line Whitepaper

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Form 8868: When Your Non-Profit Has Its Hands Full

IRS Form 8868 – Application for an Extension to File An Exempt Organization Return

Coming last in PDFfiller’s review of extension forms, this post focuses on form 8868, used by tax-exempt organizations.

Who needs the Form 8868?

An exempt organization that wants to request an automatic 3-month extension of time to file its return needs Form 8868. This form is also used to request any additional extensions.

Is the Form 8868 accompanied by any other forms?

No, the 8868 Form is not accompanied by any other forms.

When is the Form 8868 due?

Form 8868 is due by the due date of the return for which you are requesting an extension. In the case that an additional extension has been requested, the form has to be filed by the extended due date of the return. It is wise to file the Form 8868 early so that you will have time to file the return on time if the extension is denied.

How is the Form 8868 completed?

The Form 8868 is a 2-page form. The form has two parts, Part I (Automatic 3-Month Extension of time) and Part II (Additional (Not-Automatic) 3-Month Extension of Time).

Part I

Only complete this section if the organization is applying for an automatic 3-month extension of time (6 months for a corporation required to file Form 990-T) to file the return. Complete the identifying information on the filer including name, address, E.I.N., or social security number. Enter the code for the form for which you are requesting an extension. Fill in the name, telephone, and fax number of the individual who takes care of the books for the organization. Check the applicable boxes.

Line 1: The date entered on this line cannot be later than 3-months (6 months for a corporation required to file Form 990-T), from the original due date of the return.

Line 2: If you checked the box for change in accounting period, you must have applied for approval to change the organization’s tax year unless certain conditions have been met.

All filers must complete lines 3a, b, and c, even if the organization is exempt from tax or do not expect have any tax liability.

Line 3a: Refer to the organization’s return and its instructions to estimate the amount of tentative tax reduced by any non-refundable credits.

Line 3c: Balance Due. If there is a balance due, to avoid interest and penalties, pay the full balance due with the form.

Part II

This section is completed if the organization requesting an additional 3-month extension.

Line 4: The date entered here cannot be later than 6 months from original due date of the return.

Line 6: Refer to Part I, Line 2.

Line 7: For the IRS to grant the organization an additional extension for filing a return, the organization must file an application on time and include an adequate explanation regarding why the return cannot be filed by the already extended due date.

All filers must complete lines 8a, b, and c, even if the organization is exempt from tax or do not expect to have any tax liability.

Line 8a: See the specific form and form instructions to estimate the amount of tentative tax reduced by any non-refundable credits.

Line 8c: Balance Due.

Sign and date the form. Fill in your title as well.

What is the mailing address for the Form 8868?

Send the 8868 to the following address:

Department of Treasury
Internal Revenue Service Center
Ogden, UT 84201-0045

A separate Form 8868 must be filed for each form for which you are requesting an extension. No blanket request for the form is allowed. Refer to the IRS written instructions for more detailed information regarding the form.

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IRS Form 1024 – Tax Exemption for Other Organizations

IRS Form 1024 – for recognition of 501(a) tax-exempt status

PDFfiller takes a closer look at IRS Form 1024, and the organizations that should apply for tax-exempt status under section 501(a).

What is Form 1024?

Form 1024 is used by organizations to apply for tax exemption under section 501(a). Some organizations require a special letter from the IRS that recognizes their tax status for several reasons. These reasons include…

1. Public recognition of tax-exempt status
2. Exemption from certain state taxes
3. Advance assurance to donors of deductibility of contributions
4. Nonprofit mailing privileges

Who needs Form 1024?

Any tax exempt organization filing form 1023 for recognition as a nonprofit may need to file form 1024. It depends on your individual tax situation. Primary indicators of a 501(a) organization include: the express purpose of promoting the welfare of a certain group of people, who are also its members; the ability to lobby for political candidates and elections; funding from public sources like governments and individuals; and the ability to incorporate as a partnership.

Are there exceptions to who needs to fill out Form 1024?

As the 1024 form is optional, there are no exceptions to who can fill it out. It is generally filled out by organizations who wish to get a special recognition letter from the IRS concerning their state taxes, deductibility, and nonprofit mailing privileges.

How do I fill out Form 1024?

Form 1024 requires many additional steps and forms.  Most organizations will follow these steps…

1. Complete Parts I through III of the form.
2. Organizations under Section 501(c)(9), and section 501(c)(17) should also complete Part IV.
3. Complete the schedule indicated on page 1 of Form 1023.

When filling out these forms, you may need additional space that the form does not provide. You can use attachments that follow these guidelines for any additional space that you need:

1. Use 81/2 x 11 inch paper.
2. Provide your name and Employer Identification Number (EIN) at the top of each page.
3. Identify the Part and line number to which the attachment relates.
4. Attachments must be in English.
5. Generally, attachments in the form of tape, recordings or other electronic media are not acceptable unless accompanied by a transcript.

In addition to all of this, you should include any court decisions, rulings, opinions, or any other documents that will assist with processing.

When is Form 1024 due?

Because of the length of time it takes the IRS to process the 1024 form and its accompanying forms, it is recommended that you file within the first 15 months of your organization’s formation.

Where do I send Form 1024?

After ordering payment for the IRS user fee, completing Form 1024, and filling out all of its related documents, put them into a mailing envelope. Send them to:

Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 12192
Covington, KY 41012-0192

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Form 1023: The First Step in Creating Your NonProfit

Form 1023 – Applying for Tax-Exempt Status as a 501(c)3

While we have spent the past week reviewing reporting forms for nonprofits, we are taking a step back to look at how to fill Form 1023, the first step in acquiring tax-exempt status.

What is Form 1023?

Form 1023 is an IRS tax form filed by nonprofit organizations to apply for exemption from federal income tax. The form serves as an application. Once the application is approved, the organization will receive a letter of approval from the IRS. The organization will then be classified as either a “public charity” or a “private foundation.”

Other organizations that can fill out Form 1023 include those that fall under section 501(e) and (f) (cooperative service organizations), section 501(k) (childcare organizations), and section 501(n) (charitable risk pools).

Who needs Form-1023?

Any organization that falls under 501(c)(3) guidelines needs to fill out 1023 Form in order to avoid paying taxes. While it’s not required by law, it really helps non-profit organizations to file this form.

What other forms accompany Form 1023?

The forms that accompany Form 1023 depend on the type of organization filing for tax exempt status.

Church – 1023 Schedule A
School, College, University – 1023 Schedule B
Hospital, Medical Research Organization – 1023 Schedule C
Section 509(a) Supporting Organization – 1023 Schedule D
Organizations that didn’t file within 27 months of formation. – 1023 Schedule E
Home for the Elderly, Handicapped and Low Income Housing – 1023 Schedule F
Successor to Other Organizations  – 1023 Schedule G
Scholarships, Fellowships, Educational Loans, Educational Grants, Individuals/Private Foundations With Individual Grant Procedures – Form 1023 Schedule H

How do I fill out Form 1023?

When filing, the IRS recommends that you fill out and submit forms in this order:

1. User fee enclosed but not attached to the application form.
2. Form 1023 Checklist.
3. Form 2848, Power of Attorney and Declaration of Representative (if needed).
4. Form 8821, Tax Information Authorization (if needed).
5. Expedite request (if needed).
6. Application (Form 1023, Checklist, and Schedules A through H, as required.
7. Organizing document.
8. Amendments to organizing document in chronological order.
9. Bylaws or other rules of operation and amendments.
10. Documentation of nondiscriminatory policy for schools, as required by Schedule B.
11. Form 5768, Election/Revocation of Election by an Eligible Section 501(c)(3) Organization To Make Expenditures To Influence Legislation (if filing).
12. All other attachments, including explanations, financial data, and printed materials or publications.

When filling out these forms, you may need additional space that the form does not provide. You can use attachments that follow these guidelines for any additional space that you need:

1. Use 81/2 x 11 inch paper.
2. Provide your name and Employer Identification Number (EIN) at the top of each page.
3. Identify the Part and line number to which the attachment relates.
4. Attachments must be in English.
5. Generally, attachments in the form of tape, recordings or other electronic media are not acceptable unless accompanied by a transcript.

In addition to all of this, you should include any court decisions, rulings, opinions, or any other documents that will assist with processing.

When is Form 1023 due?

It is best to file the 1023 Form BEFORE the 27 months after the organization has started operation. If you file  within 27 months after your organization was formed, the original legal date of formation will be the effective date of your tax exemption.

For example, let’s say that you started your nonprofit on January 1, 2016. A year later, you are ready to file your taxes. Because you have not been awarded exemption status, you owe the IRS $5,000. You pay the IRS $5,000. You file Form 1023 on January 1, 2017. You are awarded tax exempt status on January 1, 2018 (24 months after the nonprofit was formed).

Because you filed and were awarded exemption status within 27 months of formation, your tax exemption status goes into effect on the date of the original formation (January 1, 2016). You will receive a refund for the $5,000 in taxes that you paid as a result.

Where do I send the 1023 Form?

After completing Form 1023 and filling out all of the related documents, put them into a mailing envelope. Send them to…

Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 192
Covington, KY 41012-0192

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990 Schedule B: Revealing Who Gave What to Your Nonprofit

IRS 990 Schedule B for detailing your donor information

Next up in PDFfiller‘s tax form review is IRS 990 Schedule B, which is used to provide detailed information about your contributers and the donations they made to your tax-exempt organization.

What is the purpose of submitting IRS 990 Schedule B?

The Form 990-Schedule B is a schedule of contributors that is attached with Form 990, 990-EZ and 990-PF. Form 990-Schedule B is used to provide information about the contributions the organization reported on Form 990-EZ.  It should be filled by any organization that answered ‘No’ on the Form 990, Part 4, Checklist of the Required Schedules, line 2 on the Form 990, or that received contributions of $5000 or more for a contributor during the year.

Who must file IRS 990 Schedule B? 

All organizations that file form 990 or the form 990-EZ must complete and attach a 990 Schedule B, until and unless they can certify that they don’t meet the filing requirements of the schedule by checking the Line H of Form 990-EZ.  An organization filing Schedule B can limit the contributors it reports on Schedule B using this greater-than-$5,000/2% threshold only if it checks the box on Schedule A (Form 990 or 990-EZ), Part II, line 13, 16a, or 16b.

What other forms are needed when you file IRS 990 Schedule B form?

Schedule B need to be filed along with form 990, 990 EZ and 990 PF.

What accounting method should be used for IRS 990 Schedule B form?

The same accounting method should be used that was checked on the Form 990, Part XII, Form 990-EZ, line G, Financial Statements and Reporting line 1 and Form 990-PF, line J.

When is IRS 990 Schedule B due?

Since it is attached to other forms, the deadline for 990 Schedule B is determined by the deadline for the 990 and the 990 EZ, which comes at the end of the fiscal year of the organizaton. The organizations must file the form by the 15th day of the 5th month after the end of the fiscal year.

What information do you need in order to complete this form?

The 990 schedule B needs the name and address of the organization and EIN, and detailed information about personal, payroll, and noncash contributions.  For more information on how to complete the form, review the IRS instructions.