IV.E. Government Returns

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Overview

To legitimately conduct business, the Berkeley Student Cooperative must be aware of its tax and information return filing obligations and comply with all such requirements of Federal, state and local jurisdictions. Filing requirements of Berkeley Student Cooperative include, but are not limited to, filing annual information returns with IRS, annual report to the Attorney General, annual report to the Secretary of State, property tax returns, state income tax returns, sales tax returns, information returns for retirement plans, annual reporting of compensation paid, and payroll tax withholding returns.

1. FILING OF RETURNS

The Accountant shall be responsible for identifying all filing requirements and assuring that Berkeley Student Cooperative is in compliance with all such requirements. The organization will file complete and accurate returns with all authorities and make all efforts to avoid filing misleading, inaccurate, or incomplete returns.

Filings made by Berkeley Student Cooperative include, but are not limited to, the following returns:

1. Form 990 - Annual information return of tax-exempt organizations, filed with IRS. Form 990 for Berkeley Student Cooperative is due on the fifteenth day of the fifth month following year-end. An automatic 3-month extension of time to file Form 990 may be obtained filing Form 8868. Upon expiration of the first 3-month extension, a second 3- month extension may be requested using Form 8868.
2. Form 990-T - Annual tax return to report Berkeley Student Cooperative's unrelated trade or business activities (if any), filed with IRS. Form 990-T is due on the fifteenth day of the fifth month following year-end. An automatic 6-month extension of time to file Form 990-T may be obtained by filing Form 8868.
3. Form 5500 - Annual return for Berkeley Student Cooperative’s employee benefit plans. Form 5500 is due July 31, but a request for extension of time to file may be filed.
4. W-2's and 1099's - Annual report of employee and non-employee compensation, based on calendar-year compensation, on the cash basis. These information returns are due to employees and independent contractors by January 31 and to Federal Government by February 28. Generally, Form 1099 is required only if the organization has provided more than $600 in compensation to an independent contractor during the calendar year.
5. Form 940 - Annual Federal unemployment tax return filed with IRS, for all employers [other than charitable organizations exempt from FUTA (but not necessarily state unemployment tax) under IRC section 501(c)(3)], due January 31. (Unless the organization is exempt.)
6. Form 941 - Quarterly payroll tax return filed with IRS to report wages paid to employees and Federal payroll taxes. Form 941 is due by the end of the month following the end of each quarter, or 10 days later if all payroll tax deposits have been made in a timely manner during the quarter. Berkeley Student Cooperative's fiscal and tax year-end is the Saturday following the last day of the Spring academic semester as published by the University of California at Berkeley. All annual tax and information returns of Berkeley Student Cooperative are filed on the accrual basis of reporting. Federal and all applicable state payroll tax returns are prepared by the Organization's external Payroll Administrator. Berkeley Student Cooperative complies with all state payroll tax requirements by withholding and remitting payroll taxes to the state of residency of each Berkeley Student Cooperative employee.

2. REVIEW OF FORM 990 BY FiCom

A draft of Berkeley Student Cooperative’s annual Form 990 information return shall be reviewed and approved by the Finance Committee prior to being filed with the Internal Revenue Service. This review and approval shall be documented with the signature of the Vice President of Financial Affairs and Executive Director.

3. PUBLIC ACCESS TO INFORMATION RETURNS

A. Under regulations that became effective in 1999, Berkeley Student Cooperative is subject to Federal requirements to make the following forms "widely available" to all members of the general public:

1. The three most recent annual information returns (Form 990), [excluding the list of significant donors (Schedule B) that is attached to the Form 990, but including the accompanying Schedule A], and
2. Example NPO's original application for recognition of its tax-exempt status (Form 1023), filed with IRS, and all accompanying schedules and attachments.

B. Berkeley Student Cooperative adheres to the following guidelines in order to comply with the preceding public disclosure requirements:

1. Anyone appearing in person at the offices of Berkeley Student Cooperative during normal working hours making a request to inspect the forms will be granted access to a file copy of the forms. The Accountant shall be responsible for maintaining this copy of each form and for making it available to all requesters.
2. The BSC shall comply with the Federal requirements to make its forms widely available by posting all required forms on the BSC’s web site and referring all requesters to this web site within 7 days of receipt of any request for copies. In addition to making its returns widely available on its web site, BSC will also permit visual inspections of its returns to anyone personally appearing at the BSC’s offices during normal working hours and making such a request.