Resource Type  
FAQ Type  

COVID-19 Response FAQs
FAQ about the Paycheck Protection Program from the Church Alliance
This FAQ is the result of analysis by the Church Alliance of the CARES Act as it applies to the Paycheck Protection Program. Pensions and Benefits USA is a member of the Church Alliance, a group that strives to ensure that legislative and regulatory initiatives fully address, protect and support the unique nature of retirement and health benefit plans operated by churches, religious institutions and affiliated organizations.
Retirement FAQs
403(b) Online Contributions FAQ
We receive many questions from church treasurers/administrators about our online portal for making contributions to the 403(b) accounts of Nazarene ministers. This PDF resource covers the ones that are asked most often.
Nazarene APS Program FAQ
Minimum Required Distribution (MRD) FAQ
Can I use funds withdrawn from my Nazarene 403(b) account as a tax-free housing allowance?
Who can enroll in the 403(b) plan?
When should I start collecting Social Security benefits?
How do I access my 403(b) account?
Can I move money from another retirement plan into my account in the Nazarene 403(b) Retirement Savings Plan?
Can I make withdrawals from my 403(b) account?
Can I take a loan from my 403(b) account?
When am I vested in the 403(b) Plan?
What "catch-up" contributions may I make to my 403(b) Retirement Savings Plan?
How much should I save for retirement?
What are my 403(b) Retirement Savings Plan investment options?
Does the Church contribute to my 403(b) account?
What are the IRS contribution limits to the 403(b) Plan?
When is my enrollment in the 403(b) Plan effective?
How much can I contribute to the 403(b)?
How do I enroll in the 403(b) Plan?
When can I enroll in the 403(b) Plan?
Insurance FAQs
Why doesn’t the Church of the Nazarene have a national health insurance plan?
Tax FAQs
If a church receives a gift of a used auto, and then gifts it to one of the pastors, is this a tax-free transaction?
If a church takes an offering for “Christmas gifts for pastoral staff,” and the church board determined the distribution of this offering between the various staff members, are these amounts tax-free to the staff?
What steps should a church do BEFORE receiving a notice of an IRS payroll tax audit?
Our pastor asked to be covered under FICA when he came to our church. He said his previous church treated him as subject to FICA, and he wanted the Social Security payments to be treated consistently.
My church treasurer says there is no problem treating me as subject to FICA. Is this correct?
As part of my pastoral compensation package, my church regularly reimburses the amount of my Social Security, which I have paid quarterly. . .Would it be possible for me to have the church treasurer “withhold” this amount and pay it for me. . .?
Should the church reimburse the travel expenses of a spouse when attending a conference?
Has there been any indication about the tax treatment of iPads?
I heard the IRS has clarified the church-provided cell-phone issue. What is the latest scoop?
Will declaring an employee an "independent contractor" exempt him or her from FLSA overtime requirements?
If we pay “covered” staff members on a “salary” instead of hourly basis, will this exempt them from FLSA requirements?
I receive no compensation for services. May I deduct my out-of-pocket expenses . . . as charitable contributions?
I provide a room in my home as an office . . . the church provides me an office . . . Can I claim expenses for this office . . .
Compensation & Housing FAQs
Is the value of church provided housing or housing allowance paid to a ministerial employee included when calculating income to determine eligibility for the government health insurance subsidy?
Is a church whose only employees are the pastor, a secretary, and a custodian subject to any penalties or fines if any or all of these employees purchase coverage on a health care exchange?
Our church decided to assist office staff who are providing their own health insurance. We add $500 per month over and above their salaries so they can purchase health insurance with the funds. We treat these payments as tax-free stipends. Is this OK?
Are amounts paid to a pastor to reimburse (with substantiation) his coverage in a group health plan provided by other employment subject to income and Social Security tax?
Our church reimburses our pastor (based on substantiation) for premiums related to a personal health insurance policy. We treat it as a tax-free fringe benefit. Is this appropriate?
I am moving to another pastorate just after the first of the year. It is unlikely our present home will sell in the short-term. Will we be able to include expenses relating to the new home we plan to purchase plus our current home if it doesn’t sell by the end of the year?
At what point during the year should the church cease withholding FICA tax after a minister receives a District license?
If a minister is also employed at a local store is he subject to FICA-type Social Security for the compensation from the store?
Are there any expenses which may be deducted as part of the calculation in determining the amount subject to SECA tax?
Are premiums for whole life and group term life insurance policies for our pastor taxable?
Are we obligated to report the value of a car transferred to our senior pastor as compensation?
To substantiate my housing allowance exclusion, how often should I submit expenses to the church treasurer?
Have there been any changes . . . relating to the deduction of a minister's real estate taxes and mortgage interest . . .
Our pastor's entire compensation is designated as housing allowance. Do we issue a W-2?
Can the church reduce the amount on my W-2 for contributions I make to the church?
Can I deduct charitable contributions to my church as business expenses on Form 2106 and offset them . . . on Schedule SE . . .
Who is a “qualified minister”?
We are thinking of dropping the health insurance coverage for the church staff as a way to reduce expenses. . .
Our church is just starting . . . should they start paying me a salary first . . . then add housing and benefits. . .
My church treasurer doesn’t like to do a lot of extra paperwork, so we have a simple system. . .
How often do I have to turn in my housing expenses to my treasurer to substantiate my housing allowance?
My church doesn’t reimburse me for use of my car for church-related business. . . Can I deduct the amount from my taxes. . .
Are all Ministers Considered Ministers by the IRS?
What are the IRS regulations for Business Expense Reimbursements?
What are the Reporting Procedures for the IRS?
Can we make the Custodian or Secretary an Independant Contractor?
Parsonage or Housing?
Can Ministers Opt Out of Social Security?
Can I take a "voluntary reduction" in my salary of 10 percent or more, rather than writing checks . . . for tithes and offerings?
Since I don't own a home, can the church designate part of my compensation into a non-taxable account?
Can you give me a clear definition of what is meant by "fair rental value" when determining my housing allowance?
Church Administration FAQs
Is it proper to change the annual budget for a church once it has been approved?
Is there any legal requirement for churches to provide gift acknowledgments throughout the year?
Instead of sending end-of-year contribution statements via mail, a church treasurer placed envelopes on a table in the church foyer which contained the gift acknowledgments. Is it appropriate to publicly display who is giving in this manner?
Our church provides gift acknowledgments to all donors to the church, but we usually don’t issue the acknowledgments until the end of February. Could the church be penalized because we get the acknowledgments out so late?
Our church does not include the “no goods or services” wording on our charitable gift acknowledgments. Is this a problem?
A plumber donated his services to the church during the year with a fair market value of $2,000 (the church reimbursed him for the parts and supplies). What type of gift acknowledgment should the church provide to the plumber?
Our church does not routinely provide charitable gift acknowledgments to financial supporters of the church. We only send charitable gift acknowledgments when givers request them. Is this an appropriate process?
Should someone other than the church treasurer or business administrator reconcile the bank statement?
Can excess funds raised by a church-sponsored mission trip participate be applied to participants whose funding fell short?
If a participant of a church-sponsored mission trip is unable to attend, should the donors receive their gifts back?
If mission trip participants pay all of their own expenses, should they receive charitable gift acknowledgements?
How can we protect the charitable deductibility of contributions to support mission trips?
Can a church provide a charitable gift acknowledgment to donors who are related to mission trip participants?
If a participant raises more than the cost for a mission trip or is later unable to go, may the church refund money to donors?
May a landlord deduct the difference between the low rental charged to a charity and the higher actual fair market rental . . .
Recently, a big screen TV was donated to our church. The pastor told his son he could have it. Are there rules . . .
Our church recently received a cash contribution of more than $10,000 (in actual currency, not a check). Must we report . . .
What does our church have to do if it receives a donated car and sells it?
Are love offerings for the pastor considered a charitable tax deduction?
Are love offerings for the pastoral staff considered a charitable tax deduction?
Are contributions given to cover educational expenses for the pastor's daughter considered a charitable tax deduction . . .
A young man donates a few hours each week to administer our church website. He is wondering if we can give him a receipt . . .
A business owner in my community has offered to contribute $1,000 toward carpeting for our sanctuary renovation. . .
Our board is considering providing a stipend to the "volunteer" worship leader as an “independent contractor” . . .
A member wants to donate an SUV to my church. How do we determine the value of this contribution?
Does My Church Need Workers' Compensation Insurance?
What is Done in an Annual Church Audit?
General FAQs
With changes in credit card rules and the current economy, I want to use my credit wisely. Do you have any suggestions?