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Church Law & Tax Report

January/February 2017
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Feature Article

Understanding the 2017 Tax Season

Understanding the 2017 Tax Season Subscriber access only

Ten tax-related developments that churches and ministers should know.

Articles

Challenges to the New Overtime Regulations

Challenges to the New Overtime Regulations Subscriber access only

Litigation, proposed bills seek to stop or delay upcoming changes.
Responding to the Transgender Bathroom Access Controversy

Responding to the Transgender Bathroom Access Controversy Subscriber access only

How church leaders can navigate this still-developing legal issue.
In Brief

In Brief

Key news recaps

Judge Blocks New OT Pay Rules Subscriber access only

“White-collar exemption” salary threshold set in 2004 remains in place.
Tax Calendar

Tax Calendar

Important deadlines for churches and ministers

January 1, 2017

  • Employees and employers each pay Social Security and Medicare taxes equal to 7.65 percent of an employee’s wages. The tax rate does not change in 2017. The 7.65 percent tax rate is comprised of two components: (1) a Medicare hospital insurance tax of 1.45 percent, and (2) an old-age, survivor and disability (Social Security) tax of 6.2 percent. There is no maximum amount of wages subject to the Medicare tax. The tax is imposed on all wages regardless of amount. For 2017, the maximum wages subject to Social Security taxes (the 6.2 percent amount) is $127,200. Stated differently, employees who receive wages in excess of $127,200 in 2017 pay the full 7.65 percent tax rate for wages up to $127,200, and the Medicare tax rate of 1.45 percent on all earnings above $127,200. Employers pay an identical amount. The Medicare tax rate for certain high-income taxpayers increases by an additional 0.9 percent.

January 15, 2017

Ministers (who have not elected voluntary withholding) and self-employed workers must file their fourth quarterly estimated federal tax payment for 2016 ...

January 30, 2017

Churches hiring their first nonminister employee between October 1 and December 31, 2016, may exempt themselves from the employer’s share of Social ...

January 31, 2017

  • Churches having nonminister employees (or one or more ministers who report their federal income taxes as employees and who have elected voluntary withholding) must file an employer’s quarterly federal tax return (Form 941) for the fourth calendar quarter of 2016 by this date. Enclose a check in the total amount of all withheld taxes (withheld income taxes, withheld Social Security, and Medicare taxes paid by the employee, and the employer’s share of Social Security and Medicare taxes) if less than $2,500 on December 31, 2016.

February 10, 2017

Churches having nonminister employees (or one or more ministers who report their federal income taxes as employees and who have elected voluntary withholding) ...

February 28, 2017

  • Churches file Copy A of Form 1098-C with the IRS by this date to report the sale or use of a donated vehicle. Generally, you must furnish Copies B and C of this form to the donor no later than 30 days after the date of sale if box 4a is checked, or 30 days after the date of the contribution if box 5a or 5b is checked. If box 7 is checked, do not file Copy A with the IRS and do not furnish Copy B to the donor. You may furnish Copy C to the donor. The donor is required to obtain Copy C or a similar acknowledgment by the earlier of the due date (including extensions) of the donor’s income tax return for the year of the contribution or the date that return is filed. File Copy A of this form with the IRS by February 28, 2017. If you file electronically, the due date is March 31, 2017.

Semiweekly requirements, January/February 2017

If your church or organization reported withheld taxes of more than $50,000 during the most recent lookback period (for 2017 the lookback period is July ...

Monthly requirements, January/February 2017

If your church or organization reported withheld taxes of $50,000 or less during the most recent lookback period (for 2017 the lookback period is July ...

Regular Churchgoers’ Responses to the Bathroom Access Issue

Regular Churchgoers’ Responses to the Bathroom Access Issue

How attendees view the transgender bathroom access issue by denomination.
Communicating During a Church Building Project

Communicating During a Church Building Project

Learn ways to keep communication at the forefront throughout your building project.
Protecting Your Church from Crime and Violence

Protecting Your Church from Crime and Violence

Assess the security of your church and learn how to prevent crime.