Bryan Cave Charity Law

Charity Law

ARCHIVE

Main Content

Politics in Church

September 21, 2012

Categories

Politics in Church

September 21, 2012

Authored by: Nathan Boyce

Congress and the IRS have made it clear that 501(c)(3) organizations may not participate or intervene in “any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for public office.” IRC 501(c)(3). (Note that the rule does not prohibit all support or opposition to legislation; that is permitted as long as it is insubstantial. This rules prohibits all support or opposition to a candidate.)  This prohibition includes churches exempt under Section 501(c)(3). Yet, just about every election there are accusations that this or that church has violated the rule by preaching support for a candidate from the pulpit.

A recent news story reports that several churches, rather than covertly violating this rule, are planning to openly do so.  According to the story, the position of the churches is that the IRS rule violates their First Amendment right to free speech. Their plan is to record and send

IRS Exempt Organization Newsletter 2012-16

September 17, 2012

Categories

On September 17, the IRS released its Exempt Organization Newsletter, Issue Number 2012-16. Topics include the following:

  • Register now for September 20 webinar: Starting and Operating Charities for Disaster Relief
  • Fast Track Settlement for TE/GE taxpayers
  • Register for upcoming workshops for small and medium-sized charities in IL, NC, ID, OR, and NM

How to Tell Who Gets to Play so You Don’t Pay

September 14, 2012

Categories

From BenefitsBryanCave.com

Late on a Friday, just before escaping for Labor Day weekend, the IRS, Department of Labor, and Department of Health and Human Services provided two pieces of guidance on two of health care reform’s more important provisions: determining full-time status of employees for purposes of the employer “play or pay” penalty and the 90-day waiting period requirement.  The two pieces of guidance refer to one another, so it is important to understand them both.  In addition, while neither piece of guidance takes effect until 2014, sponsors of health plans should begin planning now to address these pieces of guidance.  We addressed the 90-day waiting period guidance last Friday and this post will address the “play or pay” guidance.

IRS Exempt Organization Newsletter 2012-15

September 13, 2012

Categories

On September 11, the IRS released its Exempt Organization Newsletter, Issue Number 2012-15. Topics include the following:

  • How to find information on the new IRS.gov
  • Disaster relief through charitable organizations
  • Free Tax Exempt Bonds webinar – Sept. 18
  • Register for upcoming workshops for small and medium-sized charities in Pennsylvania and Washington

Top 10 Reasons to Attend Church On-Line

September 10, 2012

Categories

Top 10 Reasons to Attend Church On-Line

September 10, 2012

Authored by: Nathan Boyce

In a prior post, I discussed the case of an organization that was denied church status because, among other things, there was no opportunity for congregants to “interact and associate with each other in worship” where the sermon was broadcast over the radio and internet.  In a recent ruling, PLR 201232034, the IRS again denied church status to a similar organization, stating that: “A website on the Internet does not qualify as a place of worship, nor do individuals accessing that website constitute a congregation assembled to worship.” The IRS is sticking to its guns on this point, it seems.  Nonetheless below are my top 10 reasons to replace your live church with an on-line church:

  • No need to get dressed or brush your teeth
  • No one notices if you are late
  • The attorneys of Bryan Cave LLP make this site available to you only for the educational purposes of imparting general information and a general understanding of the law. This site does not offer specific legal advice. Your use of this site does not create an attorney-client relationship between you and Bryan Cave LLP or any of its attorneys. Do not use this site as a substitute for specific legal advice from a licensed attorney. Much of the information on this site is based upon preliminary discussions in the absence of definitive advice or policy statements and therefore may change as soon as more definitive advice is available. Please review our full disclaimer.