the shape of leadership

FAQ: Church Checking Accounts

Doug Clay answers frequently asked questions concerning church business practices

Doug Clay on March 21, 2017

Should the church have more than one checking account?
With the organization and flexibility that is available with most accounting software programs for churches today, there isn’t a compelling reason for a church to have multiple checking accounts. In the past, separate checking accounts for the various ministries of the church, or for designated funds such as building construction, was a way to ensure that ministry funds were kept separate. This could also help the church keep from over-spending ministry funds that weren’t available. However, a current accounting software program tailored for a church setting is more than capable of keeping ministry funds segregated into separate funds, tracking and segregating funds received and spent, and properly reporting on available funds.

Separating church funds into several bank accounts with multiple check signers and attempting to consolidate these accounts for reporting purposes adds a level of complexity and risk that the church could avoid. The church board and leadership have responsibility to ensure that funds are properly safeguarded, are used for properly authorized expenditures and are accounted for accurately and in a timely manner. The use of separate bank accounts for the church’s various ministries or funds, however, could only serve to frustrate all of these goals.

This article was originally published on and has been adapted with permission. For more resources from the General Treasurer’s office, click here

Disclaimer: The purpose of this FAQ is to provide basic information regarding church administration. Information contained within is generic in nature and is intended as a guide, not a substitute for seeking professional advice specific to your church or any state laws. If you have explicit concerns, please consult a professional.

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