Charity Reporting System

BBB Wise Giving Alliance
703-276-0100

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How Charity Evaluations are Completed

BBB produces impartial evaluative reports on soliciting charitable organizations. Organizations that are tax exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code or that conduct charitable solicitations fall within the scope of the voluntary Standards for Charity Accountability.

BBB requests a soliciting organization’s cooperation in providing information when it generates inquiries from donors and/or potential donors. In addition, a soliciting charitable organization that wishes to be the subject of a BBB report can submit information at its own initiative whether or not inquiries are received about them. Once information has been submitted, however, the final evaluation results, whether the charity meets standards or not, will be publicly available on BBB’s website.

Charity reports summarize, among other things, the programs, finances, governance and fund raising practices of the charity. In addition, if the charity does not meet standards, a detailed explanation is provided along with comments, if applicable, from the charity itself.

The Evaluation Process

The process of preparing these detailed written reports is a thorough one that goes beyond a review of how the charity spent its money. In addition to the completion of a detailed questionnaire form, BBB will request charities to provide copies of the following three items: (1) latest audited financial statements, (2) IRS Form 990, and (3) annual report. Some organizations will need to provide additional documents, depending on how certain questions are answered. A draft report on the subject charity is then prepared by BBB staff and, following BBB’s established procedure, forwarded to the subject charity for review and comment prior to distribution.