"Internet Church" Must Have Real Congregation, According to IRS


In today's increasingly digital world, the line between virtual reality and physical reality is often blurred by advances in technology that seem to be making interpersonal contact obsolete. A recent ruling from the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, however, draws a clear line in physical reality for religious organizations seeking "church" status under the tax code. In Foundation of Human Understanding v. United States, the Court of Appeals affirmed that a religious organization that primarily disseminated religious teachings through broadcasts over radio and the Internet did not qualify as a church for purposes of section 170 of the Internal Revenue Code.

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