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Avoiding Tax Pitfalls of Short-Term Mission Trips

Handling fundraising, expenditures for maximum tax benefits.

Avoiding Tax Pitfalls of Short-Term Mission Trips

Short-term mission trips serve a valuable role in fulfilling the Great Commission. Some churches, however, fail to properly plan for the numerous administrative and accounting hurdles that must be cleared in order to meet the requirements of the U.S. Department of the Treasury and to protect donors, participants, and the sending church from potential negative tax consequences. In this article, we'll look at fundraising for mission trips and how to properly track expenditures for maximum tax benefits.

Getting the biggest tax bang for your buck

In most instances, participants have to provide the funds to pay for their portion of the mission trip expenses. Generally they accomplish this in three ways:

  1. Direct payment by the participant;
  2. Solicitation of donations from friends and family; and/or
  3. Participation in various church-sponsored fundraising activities.

participant expenses

Mission trips, ...

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