After District approval, you will need to set up official documentation for your new church. You will need an EIN# and 501c3 Tax Exempt certificate before you can open a bank account to receive donations. Getting the legal documentation set up is often confusing for new churches, but don’t worry, we’ve made it really easy. Just follow the steps below!
1. Select a Church Name
Before your new church can become official it needs a name. Choosing a great church name is important. Click HERE to download an article entitled, “How to Choose a Great Church Name” by Dr. Ed Love.
2. Establish an Address
If you do not have a permanent church facility, consider getting a P.O. Box instead of using your personal home address. In most areas, a P.O. Box is less than $25 per year. A church name is all that is needed for obtaining a P.O. Box. Some local mail shops are now offering P.O. Boxes with an actual address rather than a P.O. Box address.
3. Get an EIN# (Tax ID)
An Employer Identification Number (EIN), also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, is a nine-digit number that the IRS assigns to business entities. The process of obtaining a Federal Tax Number is very simple and it’s FREE.
Click HERE to apply online via the IRS website. You must have an EIN number to get a bank account and obtain status as a new church with The Wesleyan Church Headquarters.
4. Notice of New Church Listing and 501c3 Certification
Once you have obtained an EIN, click HERE to submit your church information to the district office. The District Administrator will register your church with the General Secretary of The Wesleyan Church and input all information into TWCHub. The General Secretary's office will send the 501c3 certification to the pastor’s attention at the church mailing address on file. All Wesleyan churches operate under the tax exemption umbrella of The Wesleyan Church. The Wesleyan Church Corporation is the parent corporation. Our federal exemption operates under a group exemption.
5. Submit Church Treasurer and Additional Signer for DBA Approval
In order to open a bank account for your new church, you will need to have a Church Treasurer and an additional signer appointed and approved by the Crossroads District Board of Administration. These individuals should not be related to you or each other, and should be trustworthy and dependable. Once approved, you will receive the official DBA resolution needed to establish the bank account.
6. Establish a Church Bank Account, Payroll, and Insurance Systems
Now that you have the 501c3 Tax Exempt certificate and DBA resolution, you are ready to open your bank account. Many banks offer a free (no fees) checking account to non-profit organizations.
Payroll and insurance are the less glamorous parts of the process, but that doesn’t make them any less important. Getting the proper systems for payroll and insurance early is key to a smooth start. For Payroll, we recommend either Church Shield or Brotherhood Mutual. We also highly recommend Brotherhood Mutual for liability insurance.
We hope these steps are helpful in getting your church started off on the right foot. Please contact our district office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 765-674-8593 if you have any questions or need any additional clarification.