Annual Registration Renewal
Updated Forms & Online Filing Now Available!
As of February 1, 2020, the newly updated Form RRF-1 and CT-TR-1 (if applicable) are required. Significant changes to the forms include:
- New Form CT-TR-1 must be filed annually by charities with annual revenue under $50,000; and
- The RRF-1 annual registration renewal form now requires reporting additional information, including noncash donations.
Go Green! Save time and postage! Annual data and Renewal Form filings may be submitted using the Online Renewal System.
Links to topics below
Every charitable corporation, unincorporated association, and trustee doing business or holding property in California is required to annually renew its registration with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts. Each year an annual registration renewal report (Form RRF-1) must be filed with the applicable renewal fee. The failure to renew the registration will lead to the charitable organization being listed as delinquent with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts and may lead to the loss of tax exemption status with the Franchise Tax Board.
Required Annual Filings
Depending on gross annual revenue and other factors, some or all of these may be required annually:
- Form RRF-1 & Instructions, pdf
- Form CT-TR-1 & Instructions, pdf
- Renewal fees
- Copies of IRS Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-PF, including all schedules. Form 990-N is not required by this office.
Go Green! Save time and postage! Annual data and Renewal Form filings may be submitted using the Online Renewal System.
Due Date for Annual Renewal Filings
The above listed required annual filings and registration fees are due 4 months and 15 days after the charitable organization's fiscal year ends unless the IRS has granted an extension. Charitable organizations that have been granted an extension of time from the IRS are not required to submit Form RRF-1 and renewal fees until IRS Form 990 filings have been completed. If your organization has obtained an extension from the IRS for filing the IRS Form 990, please file the IRS Form 990, a copy of the extension letter, the Form RRF-1, and the applicable renewal fees, together as one complete package with the Registry of Charitable Trusts.
Failure to submit complete annual filings with renewal fees may result in the charitable organization's registration status being changed from Current to Reporting Incomplete.
For your annual filing due date, click on your fiscal year ending date:
Your due date is June 15, or December 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is July 15, or January 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is August 15, or February 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is September 15, or March 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is October 15, or April 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is November 15, or May 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is December 15, or June 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is January 15, or July 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is February 15, or August 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is March 15, or September 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is April 15, or October 15 with IRS extension
Your due date is May 15, or November 15 with IRS extension
Charitable organizations that are current in their registration and annual reporting requirements may submit renewal data, Registry forms, IRS Form 990 and other required filings and pay fees online! Eligible Registry Statuses are Current and Current – Awaiting Reporting. Organizations may use the Registry Verification Search tool to verify their Registry Status and look up filings and other public information.
After filing with the IRS, please have these items ready to enter/upload:
- All data as required on Form RRF-1 & Instructions (you will not need to upload the PDF itself). The Online Renewal System will prompt for the data required on Form RRF-1 & Instructions. Prior to your online session, review it and the instructions.
- If you answer “Yes” to any of the nine questions on Form RRF-1 & Instructions other than Question 8, explanation(s) are required in a PDF file.
- Complete and signed Form CT-TR-1 & Instructions in PDF format (organizations with total revenue below $50,000 and who did not file IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ with the IRS). The Registry does not require Form CT-TR-1 from organizations that file IRS Form 990, 990-EZ or 990-PF.
- Full and complete copy of IRS Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-PF including all schedules and attachments after being filed with the IRS. If you only file IRS Form 990-N, our office does not require a copy.
- Do not use the Online Renewal System before filing with the IRS. Submit all required forms and documentation at the same time, in one submission, when the entire annual filing is complete. There is only one electronic filing allowed per organization per year using the Online Renewal System.
- Do not include public and confidential documentation in the same PDF. Have ready a separate PDF file for all confidential portions of the IRS Form 990 and any other documentation.
- If you are not required to (and do not) file IRS Form 990(-EZ) and your total revenue for your most recent accounting period is $50,000 or more, have ready either Form CT-TR-1 & Instructions or a document explaining why you need not submit either that form nor IRS Form 990(-EZ).
- There is a fee required from organizations with total revenue of $25,001 or more. It must be paid online using a checking account (ACH) at the time of online submission. Have account information ready. Charitable organizations that are unable to pay their applicable renewal fee in this manner must submit their filings, along with payment by check, via U.S. mail, in person, or using an overnight service. Addresses are on Form RRF-1 & Instructions and at the bottom of the Registry Contacts page.
When your filing is complete and ready for submission, proceed to the Online Renewal System. If you do not have a User ID and Password established or they are forgotten, contact the Registry for an Account Code before proceeding to the Online Renewal System.
Renewal Forms & Links
- IRS Form 990 Series & Instructions
- The Registry's Guide for Charities Page
- Nonprofit Transactions Requiring Notice or Attorney General Approval
- Audit Requirements under the Nonprofit Integrity Act
- Executive Compensation under the Nonprofit Integrity Act
Annual Registration Renewal Fee Report
Form RRF-1 must be filed annually within 4 months and 15 days after the end of an organization's accounting period.
Annual Treasurer's Report
Effective February 1, 2020: Charitable organizations whose total revenue for the fiscal year is under $50,000 must file this form along with Form RRF-1.
Frequently Asked Questions
You can review the various organization status definitions at https://oag.ca.gov/charities/content/info#status.
Yes. Registration renewal fees must be paid each year by charitable organizations with gross annual revenues of $25,001 or more. The fee is set on a sliding scale, ranging from $25 to $300, based on the organization's gross annual revenue. The fee schedule is listed in Form RRF-1 and details regarding the fees are contained in Form RRF-1 Instructions starting on page 2.
Charitable organizations incorporated in or doing business in California are required to file documents with a number of state agencies regarding various aspects of their operations. The Attorney General has primary supervisory jurisdiction over charitable organizations to ensure that charitable assets are used for their intended purpose. Thus under the Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act (Government Code section 12580 - 12599.8) charitable organizations are required to register with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts and to file annual reports.
Yes. Every nonprofit public benefit corporation, unincorporated association or trustee holding assets for charitable purposes must register with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trust, and must also annually file Form RRF-1 regardless of whether the organization files IRS Form 990. If a charitable organization is exempt from registering with the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts, it need not file Form RRF-1. See the Initial Registration page for more information on registration requirements.
Your organization needs to first complete the initial registration process before the Registry can process your Form RRF-1. When the Registry of Charitable Trusts receives a Form RRF-1 for an organization that is not registered, the RRF-1 Form is returned to the organization with a Notice to Register.
The registration and reporting requirements under the Supervision of Trustees and Fundraisers for Charitable Purposes Act apply to persons and entities that solicit, conduct business, or hold charitable assets in or from California. This includes foreign corporations, trustees, and fundraising professionals doing business in California.
A foreign entity doing business in California is required to first register, and thereafter annually file the Registration Renewal Fee Report (Form RRF-1), with applicable fees. A copy of IRS Form 990/990-EZ/990-PF is also required if gross annual revenue is $50,000 or above. For more information, see the Attorney General's Guide for Charities Page and California Government Code sections 12580-12599.8.
Regardless of the amount of the assets or revenue, once an organization is operating in California it is required to register with the Registry of Charitable Trusts within 30 days after receipt of property, and file Form RRF-1 with the Registry annually. Also charities with revenue under $50,000 are required to also file annually Form CT-TR-1
Yes. Unincorporated entities are required to annually file the Registration Renewal Fee Report (Form RRF-1), with applicable fees. A copy of IRS Form 990/990-EZ/990-PF is also required if gross annual revenue is $50,000 or above.
The two most common reasons for receiving a Notice to Register are: (1) your tax preparer's software directed the preparer to submit a copy of your IRS Form 990 to the Attorney General's Registry of Charitable Trusts, which then prompted the Registry staff to determine that the entity is required to register and report to this office; or (2) a member of the general public made an inquiry concerning a solicitation from your organization, which then prompted the Registry staff to issue a Notice to Register.
When the Registry of Charitable Trusts receives a Form RRF-1 for an organization that is not registered, the Registry returns it back to the organization with a Notice to Register. See the Initial Registration page for more information on registration requirements. Your organization needs to complete the initial registration process first before the Registry can process your registration renewal form. Once your organization submits the initial registration form (Form CT-1), with the required founding documents and the initial registration fee, the Registry will assign your organization a State Charity Registration Number.
Please refer to instructions for IRS Form 990 and 990-PF, Part I, line 12. Please refer to instructions for IRS Form 990-EZ, Part I, line 9.
Yes. See the Registry Verification Search tool.
Our processing time varies from the date of receipt, provided that the submission is complete. If the submission is incomplete, the Registry will mail the organization an Incomplete Notice stating what additional information is needed for the renewal to be accepted. Submissions made during the months of May and November will take longer to process. Please note: organizations can review their registration status, filings and correspondence using the Registry Verification Search tool.
No. Send to the Registry a copy of the organization's request to the IRS for an extension of time to file IRS Form 990, and, if applicable, a copy of the approved extension with the completed Form RRF-1 and IRS Form 990.
Yes. And, a renewal fee be required based on total revenue for the reporting period.
An additional fee will not be required unless the amended reporting changes the required fee due to the change in the reported gross annual revenue.
The renewal filing fee is calculated based on total gross annual revenue.
Forms can be submitted overnight or in person at the address below:
Registry of Charitable Trusts
1300 I Street
Sacramento, CA 95814
The consequences for failing to timely file annual reports include: Delinquent Registry status, penalties, administrative or legal action, and the loss of tax exemption status with the Franchise Tax Board. So, it is important for your organization to fully and timely comply with the annual filing requirements.
Extensions for filing Form RRF-1 will be allowed if an organization has received an extension from the Internal Revenue Service to file their IRS Form 990/990-PF/990-EZ. An organization must file both Form RRF-1 and IRS Form 990/990-PF/990-EZ with the Registry of Charitable Trusts at the same time, along with copies of all requests to IRS for an extension and, where approval of the extension is not automatic, a copy of each approved extension.
It is not necessary to send a copy of the extension request prior to filing the report with the Registry.
The filing requirements of such organizations are determined on a case-by-case basis. All "chapter" organizations must be included in the "parent" organization's IRS Form 990/990-EZ/990-PF.
The Registry of Charitable Trusts does not send confirmation of receipt for the Annual Registration Renewal Fee Report. Organizations can review their registration status on the Attorney General's website using the Registry Verification Search tool.
An annual audit is required for organizations that report $2 million or more in gross annual revenue. For more information pertaining to the annual audit, please review Audit Requirements under the Nonprofit Integrity Act and our Frequently Asked Questions regarding the Nonprofit Integrity Act of 2004.
FAQs - Updated Forms Required February 1, 2020
Please refer to the Form CT-TR-1 instructions that are included with the form. If your organization files IRS Form 990-EZ it can submit that in lieu of < ahref="/sites/all/files/agweb/pdfs/charities/charitable/ct-tr1-form.pdf">Form CT-TR-1. If your organization did not file IRS Form 990-EZ then the information to complete < ahref="/sites/all/files/agweb/pdfs/charities/charitable/ct-tr1-form.pdf">Form CT-TR-1 can be found on the organization’s balance sheet. You may also seek guidance from a professional tax preparer if you deem necessary.
When requested by the Attorney General any periodic report shall be supplemented to include such additional information as the Attorney General deems necessary to enable the Attorney General to ascertain whether the corporation, trust or other relationship is being properly administered.” (Cal. Code Regs., tit. 11, § 306, subd. (c).)
See the instructions to Form CT-TR-1 regarding investments: “Investments: Report all funds received as a result of interest, dividends, rent received, or any other return on investment.”
Membership dues would be categorized under “Contributions, Gifts and Other Similar Amounts” which means it would report as “Cash Contributions” under Form CT-TR-1.
The amount reported is for the end of the fiscal year. See the instructions to Form CT-TR-1: “Form CT-TR-1 requires reporting of the organization's fiscal year-end financial information.”
Government Code section 12599.8 requires that charities provide an explanation of their compliance with their charitable trust responsbilities and proof of insurance to the Attorney General’s Office if, in any year, they hold restricted net assets, while reporting negative unrestricted net assets. “Restricted net assets” are assets the charity holds which are restricted for use other than for general charitable purposes and expenses. Examples of restricted assets may include a charitable donation given upon the condition it be used for a specific purpose (e.g., to build a hospital) or as a permanent endowment that limits how much of the donation may be spent annually. The concern is that charities with negative unrestricted assets (i.e., financially distressed), but who hold restricted assets, may be tempted to improperly spend from their restricted assets. Therefore, the law requires the charity to report to the Attorney General. If the charity files the IRS Form 990, and on the Balance Sheet (Form 990, Part X) it reported a negative number on Line 27 (Net assets without donor restrictions) at the end of the year and a positive number on Line 28 (Net assets with donor restrictions) at the end of the year, the charity should mark “Yes” to Question #9 on the RRF-1 and provide the requested information to the Attorney General. The IRS Form 990 no longer distinguishes between “temporarily restricted” and “permanently restricted” net assets but simply refers to assets with or without donor restrictions.