FBMI Updates2020-04-08T11:07:02-05:00

FBMI Updates

Jun. 21, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #15: Per Diem

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According to the IRS, “Per diem is an allowance paid to your employees for lodging, meals, and incidental expenses incurred when traveling. This allowance is in lieu of paying their actual travel expenses.” This explains why missionaries are able to request allowances to be designated as travel expenses via our EOM report. Deputation missionaries especially benefit from this system, as they are often traveling for ministry. Correctly designating per diem travel amounts on the EOM allows a missionary to increase their legally non-taxable ministry expenses. “Per diem payments are not part of the employee’s wages if the payment is equal to or less than the federal per diem rate and the employer receives an expense report from the employee.” For per diem, the expense report must include the business purpose of the trip and the date and place of the trip. Although you should save all receipts for ministry expenses, you are not required to send receipts for your per diem allowances claimed on the EOM Report. These rates are determined by the U.S. General Services Administration. Current rates can be found here: Per diem rates | GSA.

Please bear in mind these important things when claiming per diem travel expenses:

1. Only ministry-related travel is claimable through the Accountable Reimbursement Plan. No personal travel can be included.
2. Travel must be away from your tax home, which is generally the place that you live.
3. On the first and last day of travel, a missionary can only claim 75% of the federal per diem rates.

For more information, feel free to read the IRS documentation: About Publication 463, Travel, Gift, and Car Expenses | Internal Revenue Service (irs.gov). Please reach out to your Field Service Coordinator with any questions. Thank you!

Jun. 7, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #14: Medical Sharing Benefits

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Dear Friend,

We are pleased to be able to partner with the Benefits Office of First Baptist Church to provide a Medical Sharing Ministry option to you. For those of you who are participants in this plan, we wanted to let you know about an upcoming share increase. This is the first increase since 2019.

Please see the chart below for the details of this increase:

Household                         Current Shares                         Shares as of July 1

Single                                        $227.00                                           $250.00
Couple                                      $454.00                                           $500.00
Family                                       $530.00                                           $580.00

Thank you for your service for the Lord Jesus Christ. Please let us know if you have any questions!

May. 31, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #13: Tithes and Offerings

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Whenever you give tithes or offerings to a registered non-profit, you should receive a contribution statement at the end of the calendar year. This statement should then be used to claim your charitable donations when filing your taxes.

If you give tithes or offerings to an individual or to a non-registered entity, you will not be able to claim those donations when filing your taxes.

Tithes and offerings may not be claimed as a ministry expense on your EOM form.

May. 24, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #12: Postage Increase

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The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is implementing a price increase for mailing services. Starting July 14, 2024, the new rates will take effect. The price of a first-class mail Forever stamp will increase by 5 cents, from 68 cents to 73 cents. This will affect our prayer letter mailing service.

This may be a good time for you to change from mailing your prayer letters to churches to emailing a PDF, if possible.

Apr. 26, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #10: EOMs and Receipts

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Due to IRS regulations concerning the time frame for which receipts are valid, it is imperative that your EOM forms and receipts be turned in to our office by the 25th of the following month.

As your friends, may we strongly suggest that you turn in your EOM and receipts as soon as possible after the end of the month in order to leave time for questions, corrections, and emergencies.

Thank you!

Apr. 19, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #9: EOMs and Taxes

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When completing your taxes, you should not give your accountant any of your EOM forms. These are handled completely in-house. Your accountant would probably not understand them, and we are not able to take the time to explain them. You should only give you accountant your W-2.

Apr. 12, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #8: Donations

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Please be careful about asking for donations for the physical needs of people in your ministry. Every church has needs, including those churches who support you. Every pastor knows hurting and needy people, including those pastors who support you.

It is natural to want to help all those whom you love and to whom you minister, but your supporting churches have limited funds and are investing for spiritual rewards. It may be wiser to ask only for donations for your ministry and then use funds from your ministry to help those who are in need.

There are always exceptions, and you may know people who really want to help. We simply ask that you use some extra discretion in this area.

Apr. 5, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #7: Currency Conversions

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When submitting ministry expenses that use a foreign currency, missionaries should always convert the amount in foreign currency into the equivalent amount in U.S. dollars. Missionaries should use the standard conversion rate for that day, found online or in a conversion app, rather than just estimating or multiplying by a general number. After conversion, a missionary should enter both the converted amount on his EOM and also write the converted amount in U.S. dollars on the receipt before scanning or taking a picture of the receipt. The amount written on the receipt should match the amount entered on the EOM.

Mar. 29, 2024

Friday Financial Tip #6

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The FBMI office is happy to be able to provide the Bill-Pay Form to serve missionaries. This form allows a missionary to request help with transactions such as giving directly to other missionaries, paying for printed materials, other ministry invoices, wire requests, etc. Requests submitted through this form by the third Monday of each month will be cared for in that month. After the third Monday of every month, any wire request or other bill-pay request will be completed at the beginning of the following month. An exception to this is when our bookkeeper reaches out to a missionary specifically requesting a bill pay for a payroll deduction. Thank you so much for your time and attention. Have a great day in Jesus!

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