Nonprofit and Exempt Organizations

Nonprofit organizations may have to file returns and pay taxes for some tax types and activities, but may be exempt from others. 

Corporate Income Tax

Most nonprofits do not have to file a Vermont corporate income tax return or pay corporate income tax or the minimum entity tax. If the IRS has determined your organization is exempt from federal income tax, it is not required to register for or file Vermont corporate income tax return. No application or notification to Vermont is necessary.

However, if the organization has receipts that are classified as Unrelated Business Income by the IRS, there may be a filing requirement with Vermont.

A nonprofit organization which produced unrelated business income subject to federal income tax (receipts greater than $1,000 in Vermont) during the tax year is subject to Vermont corporate income tax laws and provisions, and required to file Form CO-411, Vermont Corporate Income Tax Return and pay the calculated tax.

Please see Technical Bulletin 59 and the Instructions for Form CO-411 Vermont Corporate Income Tax for details.

Requirements For Filing With The State

Vermont Sales and Use Tax

501(c)(3)s are exempt from sales and use tax. If you are exempt from federal income tax under 26 U.S.C. § 501(c)(3). The following steps must be taken for the exemption to be effective:

You will be required to pay tax in the following situations:

  • If your 501(c)(3)had total sales of tangible personal property exceeding $20,000 in the prior year, the nonprofit must collect and remit the sales tax on any sales of tangible personal property in the current year.
  • Generally, charges for admission to a place of entertainment provided by a nonprofit are exempt from sales tax. However, when gross sales of admission fees to a live performance by or on behalf of a nonprofit exceeded $100,000 in the prior year, the nonprofit must collect and remit sales tax on any entertainment in the current year.

Nonprofits that are not registered as a a 501 (c)(3) are not exempt from sales and use tax. Organizations with tax exempt status under § 501(c) (4)-(13) and (19), and political organizations under 26 U.S.C. § 527(e), are generally subject to sales tax. However, entertainment charges by such organizations are exempt at events meeting all the following criteria:

  • No more than four special events in a calendar year
  • Held over no more than four days
  • Open to the public

Vermont Meals and Rooms Tax

Is my Nonprofit Organization Exempt from charging Meals and Rooms Tax?

Generally speaking, no.  Nonprofits must charge, collect, and remit  Vermont Meals and Rooms Tax. 

Nonprofits are not required to charge tax when all three of the following conditions are met:

  •  Meals served or rooms rented occur on the premises of the nonprofit
  • The nonprofit is organized and operated exclusively for religious or charitable purposes
  • The activity is in furtherance of any purpose for which the nonprofit was organized


Contact Us

Commissioner Kaj Samsom
133 State Street | Montpelier, VT 05633
(802) 828-2505

Taxpayer Assistance Window
Office Hours: 7:45 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Monday - Friday

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