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View Diary: Fed Court: Ministers now have to pay income tax on their "free housing" (323 comments)

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  •  my recollection is that its gotta be on the (1+ / 0-)
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    enhydra lutris

    property of the employer as a condition of employment  so......nuns might be OK? but I think a lot of churches just give some extra in the paycheck to be used for a mortgage or rent or whatever, so that probably wouldn't fit the convenience of employer.

    but its been awhile since I've had to look at those rules.

    •  For the convenience (0+ / 0-)

      may have been stretched. Many congregations have found it hard to attract any minister (for a variety of reasons). So the "convenience" may simply be that with this benefit they can actually attract a minister, and without it, can't.

      Which would seem to suffice for it being a necessary "convenience," even if it's not on the employer's property.

      But there's an easy work-around. Arrange the purchase of the property so that the employing church (misnomer -- the IRS considers ministers to be independent contractors, and requires them to pay both halves of FICA) is also an owner (fractional, nominal, with arrangements to convert its claim to a quit claim when the minister leaves the employ of that church). Now it's the church's property and the "convenience" claim can be asserted.

      Which may be why the courts and others stopped trying to split hairs on this.

      "Be just and good." John Adams to Thomas Jefferson

      by ogre on Fri Nov 22, 2013 at 07:42:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  interesting idea, although in the estate tax (0+ / 0-)

        world that I'm more fluent in, that type of arrangement (formal fractional interest with a pre-existing understanding that only one party will actually use the property) gets shot down regularly.  

        •  Still easy to work around. (0+ / 0-)

          Could easily set up for planned events and meetings to take place there.

          "Be just and good." John Adams to Thomas Jefferson

          by ogre on Sat Nov 23, 2013 at 07:46:29 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

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