Student Loan Forgiven Programs By State

Forty-five states and the District of Columbia all have special student loan forgiveness programs for residents of their states. Many of the programs are in public service fields, such as health care, teaching, dentistry, legal, and more. ​ Remember, there are still Federal Student Loan Forgiveness programs and Secret Student Loan Forgiveness programs as part…

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The Decision: Clergy or Non-Clergy

When a church hires an employee, one of the initial decisions that must be made is whether to treat the worker as clergy, non-clergy employee or contractor. This decision may seem insignificant, but it has huge implications when it comes to payroll. Ministers have what is commonly referred to as “dual tax status.” For federal…

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Five Myths about the Ministry Housing Allowance

The Housing Allowance is one of the best tax benefits available to members of the Clergy, but also one of the most misunderstood. Here are five common misconceptions about the Clergy Housing Allowance. 1. I can only change my designation once a year. False. There is no IRS regulation stating that designations can only be…

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Can we pay for gym membership for church staff?

You can, but it would need to be considered as extra taxable income. Gym membership dues are considered a personal expense. There is no tax law that excludes employee or employer paid third-party membership dues from taxable income. The only time the value of membership dues are excludable from income is if the employer provides…

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Do I still need to track Medical Expenses?

In 2018, there were two hurdles to claiming a Medical Expense Deduction. First, you had to spend more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income on medical expenses. If you had a combined income of $100,000, you would first have to spend $7,500 on medical before you could claim any expenses. And that’s unreimbursed medical…

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Do I still need to track Housing Expenses?

A lot of people used the Standard Deduction in 2018, rather than Itemizing. You may also wonder, as a member of the clergy, “Does take the standard deduction mean we don’t have to track housing expenses in 2019?” Unfortunately, the answer is no. Even if you used the Standard Deduction, you must still keep track…

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First Quarter Estimated Payment Due

In addition to filing and paying your 1040 return, your first quarterly estimated payment will be due on April 15, 2019.  If you are a Clergy Financial client and have not yet received your updated estimated payments for 2019, you should continue to pay the same estimated amount to federal/state as you have in the…

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Filing Extensions Do Not Extend Time to Pay

The most important thing to remember about extensions is that an extension to file does not extend the time to pay. IRS expects full payment by April 15th, whether or not you file an extension or not. If you have not made all of your estimated payments or anticipated a balance for 2018, you should…

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2018 Filing Extensions

The April 15th 1040 deadline is almost here. If your return is not yet filed, you should consider filing an extension. IRS allows taxpayers to file for an automatically approved 6-month extension to October 15th if they need more time to file their 1040 tax return. No reason for the extension request is necessary- as…

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HSA Contributions Can Be Deductible, Even if You Don’t Itemize

If you contribute to an HSA, you may be able to deduct those payments from your total taxable income in 2018. Unlike regular medical expenses (which you don’t get to claim if you take the standard deduction), HSA contributions are taken as an adjustment to your income. Even if you take the standard deduction, HSA…

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