How does the IRS decide whether a taxpayer is a Minister for Tax Purposes?

The IRS considers individual facts and circumstances to decide if a taxpayer is a Minister for Tax Purposes. Court cases and practices of different denominations have influenced IRS decisions.

These five questions will help determine if a person is a Minister for Tax Purposes:

  1. Is the person ordained, licensed or commissioned?
  2. Does the person administer ordinances (baptism and the Lord’s Supper)?
  3. Does the person conduct religious worship?
  4. Does the person have management responsibilities in the church?
  5. Is the person considered to be a religious leader by the church?

Generally, a Minister for Tax Purposes must be ordained, licensed or commissioned and answer “yes” to a majority of the other four questions.

For more information, visit the Ministers' Tax Guide

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