The University is tax-exempt under section 115 of the Internal Revenue Code and/or under the doctrine of intergovernmental tax immunity. Section 115 provides tax-exemption for "income derived from the exercise of any essential governmental function." In Revenue Ruling 75-436, the Internal Revenue Service recognized that citizen education was an essential governmental function.
The University's federal tax identification number is 04-3167352.
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts' tax identification number is 04-6002284. The Commonwealth's number is used for payroll tax purposes and reporting.
In general, the University is exempt from state sales tax on purchases (Form ST-2 Certificate of Exemption (pdf). Vendors requiring proof of exemption may request a Form ST-5 Sales Tax Exempt Certificate.