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Author: Subject: Religion in America and Taxes
marymary100
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[*] Post 327966 posted on 30-3-2008 at 00:27 Reply With Quote
Religion in America and Taxes



Any religious organisation in America, if I'm understanding this correctly, avoids paying tax if they agree to stay out of politics.

Is that correct?
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[*] Post 327970 posted on 30-3-2008 at 01:39 Reply With Quote


Essentially correct, but there are some qualifications, for those who are fussy about details.

They don't have to pay income tax on gifts to them, as they would if the gifts were corporate profits. They do have to pay the employer's taxes on wages for their employees. If they have property that is not being used for a religious purpose, they must pay the property tax on it. (Example: I know of congregations that have rented out houses which had served as parsonages (clergy housing) when no clergy was residing therein, and they had to pay taxes on them.)

It's fairly common for them to wind up paying sales tax on small purchases, because it is extra trouble to go through the process of establishing the paperwork so that the exemption will be on record for every purchase. It's worth it to do the paperwork for sales tax on large purchases, like building materials or vehicles.

I think they've gotten hit with the same taxes on phone services that everyone else pays, but I'm not certain.

I'm pretty sure they pay the same transportation fuel taxes as everyone else. They do have to pay vehicle license fees.

They would have to pay the regular taxes on cigarettes and alcohol, but I don't know of any churches that buy cigarettes. (I do know one busy Roman Catholic Church that applied for a liquor license, because they had so many wedding receptions that it worked out to be cheaper than getting individual event permits.)
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[*] Post 327983 posted on 30-3-2008 at 09:50 Reply With Quote


Does that mean that when pastors of particular churches do make political comment that that church's tax exemption is revoked?
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