Nonprofit Exemption FAQs

How does an organization apply for a Virginia retail sales and use tax exemption?

Go to Nonprofit Online at, or complete Form NP-1 and submit it to the Department of Taxation, Nonprofit Exemption Unit, Post Office Box 27125, Richmond, Virginia 23261-7125. For detailed information on exemption requirements, go to


What do I do if I forgot my user-id and password?

If you forgot your user-id and you provided a valid email address, you must log into Nonprofit Online and select "Forgot Your Password". Enter your e-mail address and your user-id will be e-mailed to you. Once you have retrieved your user-id, you must log in and enter your user-id and your hint will be displayed to help you with your password. Please note that if you make 6 unsuccessful login attempts, your account will be locked. You must then contact the Department Taxation at (804)371-4023 to get your access unlocked.


Is there a fee to apply for a Virginia retail sales and use tax exemption?

No. There is no fee to apply.


Does an organization's Federal tax- exempt status automatically exempt them from Virginia retail sales and use tax?

No. In order to be exempt from the Virginia retail sales and use tax, an organization must apply to the Department of Taxation and meet all the exemption criteria set forth in Code of Virginia §58.1-609.11. See for additional information.


What items may an organization purchase with the exemption certificate?

Virginia law allows for the purchase of tangible personal property used or consumed by the organization. Examples include, but not limited to: office supplies, computers, office furniture, items used for fundraising, and items used to pursue the mission or purpose of the organization.

The exemption does not apply to purchases of tangible personal property that will be furnished to a contractor performing construction, installation, repair or any other service with respect to real property utilized by the organization.


How do I apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for my organization?

You obtain your EIN from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) by completing Form SS-4. The Virginia Department of Taxation does not issue the EIN. You may apply for an EIN on-line at the IRS website, or you may call them at (800) 829-4933 and apply over the phone. Please see How to apply for an EIN for more information.


How does my organization make a tax-exempt purchase from a retailer in Virginia?

An exempt organization with a valid exemption certificate should provide the retailer with a copy of the exemption certificate issued by the Department of Taxation.


Once an organization's exemption request has been approved, can it be applied retroactively to purchases?

No. Once the exemption request has been approved, the organization may purchase items exempt of the tax beginning on the effective date on the exemption certificate. You may not request a refund for items purchased outside the dates listed on the exemption certificate.


I am a new officer for a nonprofit organization and I need to obtain a copy of my Virginia exemption certificate. How can I get a copy?

Log on to Nonprofit Online ( and create a user- id and password. On the next page select the Change Access Request option. Once you have completed this process, the Department will approve the request within 48 hours. You will then be able to access the application using your new user-id and password. Select your organization under the "Associated Organization History" section to print your certificate.


Does an organization's Virginia retail sales and use tax exemption apply to other taxes such as Corporate Tax, Withholding Tax, and Utility Tax?

No. The exemption applies only to the sales tax charged on the purchases of tangible personal property and/or taxable services purchased by an organization.


Can I use my Virginia exemption certificate to purchase a vehicle for use by my organization?

No. The sales tax charged on the purchase of a vehicle is a motor vehicle sales tax which is administered by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). You must contact DMV at (804) 497-7100 for their exemption requirements.


My organization has a tax-exempt letter from another state, e.g., (DC, Maryland, etc). Will Virginia retailers accept another state's sales tax exemption certificate?

No. Retailers located in Virginia should only accept a valid exemption certificate issued to the organization by the Virginia Department of Taxation.


Go to Nonprofit Online

Go to Additional information about sales and use tax exemption for Nonprofit Organizations

Last Updated 11/29/2016 10:57