A federal judge has ruled that an IRS ruling that gives clergy tax-free housing allowances is unconstitutional.
U.S. District Judge Barbara B. Crabb, who made the ruling last week, said the tax exemption:
provides a benefit to religious persons and no one else, even though doing so is not necessary to alleviate a special burden on religious exercise.
judge has found unconstitutional a law that lets clergy members avoid paying income taxes on compensation that is designated part of a housing allowance.
This is interesting, to me, as is the whole idea of tax-free faith groups (and not just their houses). I know we’ve had the discussion here before whether faith groups should be tax exempt. Here’s one perspective (tax ‘em, though the writer appears particularly focused strictly on churches, read: Christians).
And here’s the IRS’s take on it.