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A Church Closes Then Sold Who Gets The Money?


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In accordance with the church bylaws.

 

 

With our church the bylaws state it is disbursed between churches, missionaries, and/or ministries of like faith severally as deemed by the congregation at closure. (after liquidation and satisfaction of all liabilities)

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In accordance with the church bylaws.


With our church the bylaws state it is disbursed between churches, missionaries, and/or ministries of like faith severally as deemed by the congregation at closure. (after liquidation and satisfaction of all debits)




What if the pastor takes it, and starts a church on his own. Different or new members. Would this be stealing?
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Back to the bylaws, most are set up with the church deciding to close, merge, re-incorporate, et.al.

 

If the church chooses to remain and the pastor takes the bank account (or portion thereof) without the approval of "body" as set forth in said bylaws then he is in violation of the same.

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Back to the bylaws, most are set up with the church deciding to close, merge, re-incorporate, et.al.

 

If the church chooses to remain and the pastor takes the bank account (or portion thereof) without the approval of "body" as set forth in said bylaws then he is in violation of the same.

 

That's when the lawyer gets involved ..... lol

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Back to the bylaws, most are set up with the church deciding to close, merge, re-incorporate, et.al.

If the church chooses to remain and the pastor takes the bank account (or portion thereof) without the approval of "body" as set forth in said bylaws then he is in violation of the same.



Lets say old members did not agree with the new pastor, and left. The church fall short on the bills. Now, the pastor wants a new beginning else where. Can he sell and do what he pleases. Independent Baptist church
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Depends how the church is set up.  If it's non-incorporated, then the pastor is considered the "owner".... then I suppose "legally" he could close the church, take the money, and start a new one elsewhere.   It's been done, although it ruins people in the process, since this isn't a godly thing to do.   However it's risky to have a church set up like this because the pastor is also liable for any debts or things that go wrong with the church, I think.    

 

However every church should have something in their bylaws or constitution to deal with this.

 

If the church is incorporated, then the money belongs to the church (I think that's how it works) and the church decides what to do with any extra after all debts have been paid.  I can't see that being an issue though, since most churches probably close because there IS no money.  Which is why they close.

 

Some of them merge, too, in which case the money would go in a pot with the merging church's money.

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Depends how the church is set up.  If it's non-incorporated, then the pastor is considered the "owner".... then I suppose "legally" he could close the church, take the money, and start a new one elsewhere.   It's been done, although it ruins people in the process, since this isn't a godly thing to do.   However it's risky to have a church set up like this because the pastor is also liable for any debts or things that go wrong with the church, I think.    

 

However every church should have something in their bylaws or constitution to deal with this.

 

If the church is incorporated, then the money belongs to the church (I think that's how it works) and the church decides what to do with any extra after all debts have been paid.  I can't see that being an issue though, since most churches probably close because there IS no money.  Which is why they close.

 

Some of them merge, too, in which case the money would go in a pot with the merging church's money.

 

Thanks, do the Southern Baptist have this set up this way, I was told the church can be sold for 1 Dollar, to a church that is of the same faith or growing. Just pretty much handed down.

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Our church has a trust deed.  I think most churches do, and it may be a legal requirement to have one, for buildings held by the church.  You have to have trustees.  I am not sure if they can be members of the church, they could be some years ago, but laws have been tightened up recently and may have been changed. Our trustees are an outside organization, FIEC Ltd, a charitable company, who would decide what would happen to the buildings according to the trust deed.  Our original trust deed said the work should always be carried on as a mission.  When we wanted to change the name to a church, before my time, we had to get the House of Lords to agree to the change of the deed.

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  • 3 years later...
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In our country, UK, churches are considered to be charities, and charities cannot own property, so the trustees own the property. However, the officers of the church, pastors, elders or deacons, are considered to be trustees on the ground, and in the case of, say, being sued for negligence, they could be liable to unlimited fines.  There is, however, a new category called CIO, which is Charitable Incorporated Organisation, which is similar in a way to a limited company, where the church, or mission or any other charity can hold property,  So the CIO is the legal entity.

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I know of a church where the pastor was voted in and through the course of 2 years he drove all the members away and then sold the Church building, the Christian School, and the land that the church was planning on building a future building on. After selling all of those he closed the church and left town. There was no members left to do anything about it. Sad, but this does happen sometimes.

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  • 1 year later...
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Again, what do the bylaws state and what does the secular law within that state stipulate. There is also the fact that something can be legal and not ethical.

Also, is this money now used for the preacher's home or set aside for a future church location?

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  • 1 month later...
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Our church is having to sell its self as we have run out of people and funds to support the church.  Our Pastor died 9 months ago and we have been going downhill since.  We really only have 3 board members and no congregation.  We are all volunteers in our positions and have never been paid.  We have two mortgages created by the previous Pastor some 15 years ago and have been paying them every since.  We have a house next to the church that is in need of repairs but currently the Pastor's wife and son are sill living in it.   We have had the same bi-Laws for over 20 years and it says nothing in them about what is to be done with the money left over after the sale  of the church, bill paid ,  mortgages settles , lawyer and Realtors fees.  We don't know what the law is for any money that may be left.  Anybody ever encounter this?   Also we have never filed for a 5013C. 

 

Thanks,  

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I'm no expert on this matter so I could be wrong, but I would think that the 3 board members that are left would discuss and vote on what to do with the monies that are left over.  I do not know anything about your situation, but I would vote that the monies go to a like minded church that could use the funds to keep the doors open.

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Go to a Title company and ask these questions of them. They can guide you through the process and will certainly find out who is on both the deed and mortgage. Someone is paying the mortgage and is most likely the responsible party that would be due any overage after any sale is made. You cannot sell without going through either a Realtor or Title company, so it is best to start there.

Another thing to think about is that banks do not lend money for mortgages without someone to guarantee the loan, their name, or names will be on record with the county and the bank. The name or names on the record of the deed will be the actual owners of the property. The church business meeting minutes should record vital information in regard what was done in relation to the church property and when it was done. Names of people would also be on the minutes.

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist
1 hour ago, Shoostie said:

All churches are 501c3, filing is irrelevant.   Sell the church, pay off the mortgages.  Those three board members are in control. There is no law about where the money goes, after paying off debts.  The Pastor's wife and son need to move, and they've had nine months to move, so it seems they need a shove, else they need to start paying rent.

 

 

 

Lovely attitude there. What about the church looking after a widow?

What about this grieving woman who has lost her husband who was a faithful servant for who knows how long being looked after.

Your lack of compassion betrays you.

 

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16 hours ago, Shoostie said:

All churches are 501c3, filing is irrelevant.   

Not so...

https://www.501c3.org/what-is-a-501c3/

In order for a corporation or other qualifying entity to receive 501(c)(3) status, it must apply to the IRS for recognition by filing Form 1023 (or Form 1023-EZ),

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Yes,  we have tried to help her as much as possible also because our Pastor was paid very little when he was there.  Myself and another member (on the board, Usher, Secretary and Treasurer) handled just about all function not once but twice in the last 10 yrs we were without a pastor for over a year at a time.  It is God's will that it stayed open and he provided what we need to stay a float.  We were still able to keep open our Food Pantry and a few other sacrifices of love for others.  We tried but this season is over and it make us very sad.  Now if we can just get help to figured out how to go about all this selling stuff that would be a big relief.  Thanks for the comments!

 

Salyan,  you are correct,  It is very much a process and can be expensive.  We were never able to do it.  I guess we were just non -profit. 

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39 minutes ago, Carol Concerns said:

Salyan, you are correct,  It is very much a process and can be expensive.  We were never able to do it.  I guess we were just non -profit. 

In most places, even non-profits have to be incorporated.  If you can find an incorporation certificate, that might confirm it. Otherwise, you could try calling your state/county office responsible for non-profit/society/church registrations, and see if you can find out exactly what kind of organization your church is registered as. They would probably be able to direct you to appropriate Acts or statutes that govern what to do in this situation. Combining that with Jim's suggestion of finding out who holds the mortgage should give you a pretty good start!  

If you're closing down, and the widow needs support, are you considering giving her some of the proceeds (if you're legally allowed to sell them)?

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist
32 minutes ago, Shoostie said:

You old hag,  you're wrong.   And, it looks like all the regular hateful IBF morons are as ignorant as you are, as none of them have corrected you.  I'm not going to correct you because 1) You love being ignorant.  2) You're pig who has disinvited me from sharing any knowledge with you.

Oh dear...

The countdown has begun...

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  • Independent Fundamental Baptist
14 minutes ago, Shoostie said:

The countdown was already started.

I think that may very well be the closest you've come to saying something that is founded upon truth.

...but then again...what do I know? Usn's elderly folks' minds tend to not be very sound'n stuff...

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19 minutes ago, No Nicolaitans said:

I think that may very well be the closest you've come to saying something that is founded upon truth.

...but then again...what do I know? Usn's elderly folks' minds tend to not be very sound'n stuff...

Your mama told me that she regrets not throwing you back into the toilet when you were little.

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And  another one bites the dust. It just amazes m that there  are people like this that will continually register on forums that they know will not put up with their foolishness. Life for a contrarian such as this fellow must be extremely stressful and depressing. 

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As for the 501c3, no, a church is not 501c3 unless they apply and pay for it, and it always comes with government strings. However, the IRS has a code, 508c1a, which states essentially that a church/religious organization is recognized as tax excepted; no need to ask or apply for it, and it comes without strings. The main difference is that the IRS can refuse to give a reimbursement on giving to it, but I always wondered why we give to God's work, then expect Uncle Sam to give us some back. 

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