I've been told that there's a tax deduction for fulltime ministers. I wanted to know first of all what constitutes the status of a fulltime minister, how many hours dedicated to the ministry a year. Also what are the deductions for fulltime ministers. My wife dedicates more than 840 hours a year. Next year I plan to do the same. There are many expenses to our ministry (Clothes, Liturature, Gas, ext.) I wanted to know of any web sites that might clear up how to go about keeping records for the fulltime ministry status if we qualify. Thank You in advance.
<< I've been told that there's a tax deduction for fulltime ministers. >>There are some special provisions, but I'm unfamiliar with them. I'd suggest you take a look at IRS Publication 517, which may have some useful information. If either of you has been ordained, the church headquarters might also be a good source.If you get to more specific questions, you might want to post to Usenet's misc.taxes.moderated. There's an enrolled agent who regularly participates there who has a number of clergymen as clients.Phil MartiTax Preparer
My parents where ordained ministers who where missionaries to an indain reservation. They had an accountant/tax person who had them keep ALL receipts. This included food, phone bill, rent, clothes, books, hotel... everything they spent money on they had a receipt for. When they put gas in their cars they got a receipt for it... they then marked down the date and milage reading and which car it was from. At the end of the year the tax person would take all the receipts and tally them up. she would then deduct them from their income. Most years they spent more than they made. So in the end they did not owe any taxes. They even kept the receipt for the tax preparation and used it the next year. I don't know if this was unique to missionaries or to any clergy but I would suggest you talk to a tax preparer/ accountant. It will be worth the $$ in the long run.Hope this Helps....G
Zondervan publishes a Tax and Financial Guide for Ministers (and one for Churches and Non-Profits) that I've found very useful--and pretty inexpensive.Generally, to be considered a "minister" by the IRS, you must have income from the church and must have been recognized by some organizational authority as a "minister." Using your funds and resources for church-related work doesn't make you a minister, but you should be able to deduct a great deal of the expenses as you would any contributions to a tax-exempt organization.Hope that helps!
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