Frequently Asked Questions
Our Church Treasurer has maintained our financial records since our inception. Do we really need to retain your services?
Yes. We are thankful you have a dedicated, trustworthy member keeping your books and records. But it is doubtful that your Church Treasurer has been kept abreast of all of the changes to IRS regulations. If you do not know Church Law, it is dangerous to do Church Books. As honorable as your Treasurer may be, would you let a blind person drive your Church bus, just because the person is faithful, loyal, and trustworthy? Would you allow a physician to put shingles on your home or let a paperboy work on your new car? It is not about how faithful, loyal, or trustworthy someone may be—what matters is, are they an expert in that particular area? By retaining us the Pastor, Church Board, and the members can rest assured that your financial records will be fully compliant with all regulations governing Church accounting procedures.
The Church purchased the latest bookkeeping software. Won’t the software ensure our compliance?
No. There are two problems with the question posed by this scenario. Very little software is designed for Church or non-profit bookkeeping. The other problem relates to how much of an expert your data entry clerk is with the software, and if he or she is an expert in Church and non-profit tax law. The problem with software has always been—garbage in; garbage out. Either of the two scenarios can create problems for your Pastor, Board, and Church members which could result in huge financial penalties.
We are a small Church. Would the IRS really come after us?
They could. Church size has no bearing on whether or not you could end up on the IRS radar. The IRS knows that smaller Churches do not have the resources to fight their Goliath. This often results in very unfavorable outcomes for the Pastor, Board, and Members. There have been many small Churches that have encountered the wrath of the IRS. Don’t be one of them.
We would like to retain Chitwood & Chitwood to ensure our financial records are always compliant, but can we really afford it? Isn’t the monthly fee expensive?
The answer to the first part of this question is, “You really can’t afford not to retain us.” Our fees pale in comparison to what you will pay in attorney fees, CPA costs, and IRS penalties, should the they target you. Secondly, our fees are not expensive. We have designed our fee system according to the number of monthly financial transactions of your Church. If your Church only has a few transactions per month, your fee would be much less than a Church which generates many monthly transactions.
If we retain your services what would be our responsibilities?
We need you to deposit your money and pay your bills. We review your monthly transactions to ensure total compliance. By doing this monthly, we can fix any errors your Treasurer or Secretary may have inadvertently generated.
Is your firm accessible, should we have issues or questions?
We are always here for you. As a client, you have unlimited consultation with our staff—when you call us, you do not get an answering machine, but a friendly voice that will answer or direct your call to the appropriate section of Chitwood & Chitwood. Your satisfaction, and compliance is our goal.
Do you offer other services other than Church bookkeeping?
Yes. We are a full-service Church firm designed to maintain every aspect needed for you and your Ministry. For more in-depth response to other services, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 800-225-5849.