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Charity Navigator's Plans for the COVID-19 Pandemic's Effect on Financial Ratings

April 6, 2021

Charity Navigator continues to monitor the developments regarding COVID-19 and its effects on the nonprofit industry.  As a portion of our ratings are based on data taken from the IRS Form 990, it may be some time before we begin to fully see and analyze the financial impact on the nonprofit sector. However, as we are now beginning to receive Forms 990 that have fiscal year ends 3/31/2020 (the early stages of the pandemic), we will be taking actions to not unfairly penalize nonprofits due to the economic impacts of the pandemic.
In the coming months, we will be providing all rated organizations the opportunity to -submit narrative data to us on how they were affected by the pandemic and how they innovated and adapted. In the event that an organization’s rating on Charity Navigator would be negatively impacted due to the pandemic, the responses to these questions will result in the organization’s rating remaining unchanged from what is currently posted. The answers to these questions will appear on the rating profile pages and will provide our users with context on why the financial rating was not updated.
When we’re ready to begin collecting data, we will contact nonprofits where contact information is available and publicly post on social media and our website about steps nonprofits can take. In the meantime, there are no actions required from nonprofits at this time. We will continually reassess this plan as we receive more data from the IRS and share updates when available.

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