Rev. Proc. 2017-53: Guidelines Issued on Equivalency Determinations for Public Charity Status

In Rev. Proc. 2017-53, the IRS provides guidelines that tax practitioners may use to prepare written advice on which a domestic private foundation ordinarily may rely in making an equivalency determination that the grantee of a grant made for Code Sec. 170(c)(2)(B) purposes is a qualifying public charity.  The introduction to Rev. Proc. 2017-53 begins as follow:

Private foundations may wish to treat grants to foreign grantees as qualifying distributions that satisfy the distribution requirements imposed by § 4942 of the Internal Revenue Code (Code) and not as expenditures requiring expenditure responsibility in order to not be subject to the excise tax on taxable expenditures imposed by § 4945 of the Code. If a private foundation makes a “good faith determination” that a foreign grantee qualifies as a qualifying public charity (as defined in section 3.03(3) of this revenue procedure), the grant will generally be a qualifying distribution that does not require expenditure responsibility in order to not be a taxable expenditure.

This revenue procedure modifies and supersedes Rev. Proc. 92-94, 1992-2 C.B. 507, which provided a simplified procedure that private foundations could follow in making good faith determinations (also known as equivalency determinations).

This revenue procedure reflects the changes to the equivalency determination final regulations published in 2015 (TD 9740; 80 FR 57709; 2015-42 IRB 573), including the elimination of the ability of a private foundation to rely on a grantee affidavit for purposes of the special rule. This revenue procedure also reflects the changes to the public support tests for § 170(b)(1)(A)(vi) and § 509(a)(2) organizations set forth in final regulations published in 2011 (TD 9549; 76 FR 55746; 2011-46 IRB 718), and applies these changes in the context of equivalency determinations. In addition, this revenue procedure includes other updates and changes in response to comments from the public.

See full Rev. Proc. 2017-53 by clicking here. 

Posted by Lewis J. Saret, Co-General Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal.

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