Qtr I - Newsletter 2019
From the President
For those of you who missed it, we recently conducted a series of seminars around Northern California and Nevada where we presented the latest updates on tax and compliance issues impacting churches and religious organizations. If you were unable to attend a seminar but would like to receive copies of the materials presented, you can purchase them on our website's Store. A great deal of what was discussed at the seminar had to do with how the IRS has chosen to interpret various aspects of the tax reforms implemented in 2018. The impact on ministers and religious organizations is significant in some cases, so you are encouraged to pick up the materials and learn how best to protect your ministry and, perhaps, assist your pastoral staff to better understand how the changes will affect them.
In this newsletter, we do provide you some insight into several major issues that affect religious organizations. We encourage you to spend a few minutes reading the articles and considering together with your staff how you can continue to best protect and support your ministry in our ever changing world of tax and compliance.
Should you have questions or if we can assist you in any way at your ministry please let us know.  We are here to serve you.

Yours in His Service,
Steve Boersma, Ph.D.
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California regulates wages and hours of nonexempt employees with documents called Wage Orders. Due to the January 1 increase in minimum wage rates, new California Wage Order postings are required. Laminated Poster on sale fo r $15.99 through Feb., 28th.
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Ministerial Housing Allowance Court Challenge Continues
The Freedom from Religion Foundation (FFRF) , a non-religious organization, renewed its challenge against Section 107(2) of the IRS tax code in a federal lawsuit filed on April 6, 2016, in the Western District of Wisconsin. FFRF Co-Presidents Annie Laurie Gaylor and Dan Barker brought suit against Jacob Lew, U.S. secretary of the treasury, and John Koshkinen, IRS commissioner. The lawsuit challenges the clergy housing allowance, ( read more)
  Parking Fringe Benefits and Unrelated Business Income
The IRS has provided guidance and examples for calculating the nondeductible portion of parking expenses. In addition, the IRS has provided guidance to tax-exempt organizations to help such organizations determine how unrelated business taxable income (UBTI) will be increased by the nondeductible amount of such fringe benefit expenses paid or incurred. (read more)  
null Judge Rules IRS Can Tax Gifts Made Directly to Pastors
In October of 2018, a Federal Tax Court judge ruled that "love gifts" provided to pastors are taxable income. The written opinion cited both legal authorities and Bible verses.
Pastor Felton was pastor of Holy Christian Church in St. Paul, Minnesota, during the years at issue - 2008 and 2009. In each of those two years, Pastor Felton received from members of his congregation more than $200,000 that he considered nontaxable gifts for income tax purposes. ( read more)  
Moral Convictions Exemptions
Under ACA Expanded
On November 7, 2018, the Departments of Health and Human Services, Treasury, and Labor (the Departments) announced two final rules that provide conscience protections to Americans who have a religious or moral objection to health insurance that covers contraceptive methods, including certain contraceptives that many view as abortifacients, and/or sterilization procedures. (read more
Employment Corner
Protecting Your Exemption Under California's the Fair Employment & Housing Act (FEHA) 
FEHA recently tightened its requirements regarding sexual harassment training of employees so that by 2020, virtually California employer will be required to provide a minimum amount of training to their employees and document that the training occurred.
Some within the religious community have asked the question as to whether or not this new provision will apply to their organization. The answer is maybe, but not likely. (read more) 
San Jose
  When: Thursday, March 28, 2019 
Where: Crossroads Bible Church
Speaker: Ms. Rona Layton , Attorney
When: April
Where: TBD
Speaker: Jason Guinaso, Attorney
Contact: Brad Chinn ~ 775-853-4234 x24 ~ bchinn@rcfnv.org