Many concerns have been raised in the church about healthcare reform regulations recently handed down by the IRS and Department of Labor, according to Don Walter, director of Pensions and Benefits USA. “While some general questions have been answered, many employers/churches have limited time to obtain answers about reimbursing these costs for their employees and for each specific circumstance,” Walter said.

According to Walter, the greatest concern appears to be the taxation provisions and penalties now in place under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations.

The level of interest in this topic was reflected in a recent webinar presented by the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA). More than 1,500 individuals and groups pre-registered for this webinar—the highest number for any ECFA webinar to date. The session was led by ECFA President Dan Busby, and featured Danny Miller and Allison Gardner of the law firm of Conner & Winters LLP.

“From the calls and emails we have been receiving, there is tremendous interest and confusion about health care reimbursement in our churches,” Walter said. “In an effort to help them find accurate information, we invite ministers and church treasurers to view the ECFA webinar by registering for a free account. “

Pension and Benefits USA is providing a brochure of information that was included with registration for the webinar. Walter added, “After participating in the webinar, our staff believes that for the majority of churches seeking to be in compliance with the new rules, “Road 3” outlined in the brochure appears to be a good policy to adopt. Any church concerned that IRS penalties may apply should file IRS Form 8928 as instructed in the webinar.”

Please note, Pensions and Benefits USA is not permitted to offer legal or tax “advice.” We do, however, provide general tax information to churches and ministers in the Church of the Nazarene. Additional tax-related information is available under the Resources tab at pbusa.org. Important tax questions should be discussed with a qualified tax advisor to be sure all tax liability is met.


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