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Taxation—Church Property - Part 2

New York's highest court ruled that four parsonages owned by a church were all exempt from property tax.

Key point. Parsonages are exempt from property taxation in some states.

* New York's highest court ruled that four parsonages owned by a church were all exempt from property tax since they were occupied by "officiating clergy" employed by the church. New York law exempts from property tax "property owned by a religious corporation while actually used by the officiating clergymen thereof for residential purposes shall be exempt from taxation." A church owned four residences, each of which was occupied by an assistant pastor. A local tax assessor refused to exempt these properties from tax on the ground that the term "officiating clergyman" should be construed to mean the "spiritual and settled leader" of a church. The church appealed.

The New York Court of Appeals (the highest state court) noted that the city was claiming that there is only one officiating clergyman per congregation—the ...

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Posted:
  • July 1, 2005

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