Linux Kernel Tax-Exempt

Aug 21, 2007

The IRS (Internal Revenue Service) has recognized the Linux Kernel project as a private operating foundation and exempted it from income tax.

Recognition as a private operating foundation by the IRS has given the Linux Kernel Organization a status similar to that of a registered charity. Pursuant to paragraph 501(c)3, the organization is permitted to issue receipts for donations and gifts which are tax-deductible for the giver. Linux Kernel Organization can also distribute the Linux kernel and other Open Source software and engage in tax-exempt operations.

The Linux Kernel Organization is assured of its status as a non-profit organization without regular income, funded by donations for at least a year. After the first year, Kernel Org will be required to submit documents on an annual basis to demonstrate its continued status.

Official recognition is extremely important to the continued existence of the organization, and gives Kernel Org the ability to canvas for funds that would normally be subject to taxation. In addition to this, tax exemption makes the organization more attractive to sponsors who can set off their donations.

The Linux Kernel Organization was founded in 2002. Its current President is H. Peter Anvin, with Jeff Uphoff as Treasurer and Chris Wright as Secretary. The Board also includes Kees Cook and Linus Torvalds.

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