The IRS has warned churches and charities not to become involved in politics during this election year.

Groups that are tax exempt under Tax Code Section 501 (c) (3) are prohibited from directly or indirectly participating or intervening in any political campaign on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate for public office. Charities, educational institutions, and religious organizations are subject to this rule. Violators may lose tax-exempt status and be subject to an excise tax on the amount of money spent in that activity.

The rules are explained in IRS Publication 1828, Tax Guide for Churches and Religious organizations. This and other information about prohibitions that apply to tax-exempt groups is available on the IRS Web site

This Week's Circulars