TN 30 (08-05)
A member of a religious order who takes a vow of poverty does not report any income
as SEI. To permit coverage for these members, the law provides an arrangement through
which the order may deem itself to be the employer of its active members and report
deemed wages for them.
Members’ services are covered only if the order, or an autonomous subdivision of the
order, elects coverage.
The order elects coverage for all of its active members by filing a Certificate of
Election of Coverage (Form SS-16) with the IRS. The order can elect coverage for certain
vow-of-poverty members for a retroactive period up to 20 calendar quarters before
the quarter in which the order files the certificate.
The order reports the fair market value of the food, lodging, clothing, and other
perquisites (privileges) furnished to its members as deemed wages.
Services performed by all current and future active members of the order are covered.
Services performed by members of religious orders working outside the U.S. are covered
the order has elected coverage,
the member is a U.S. citizen, or effective January 1, 1984, a resident alien, and
the individual remains a member of the order even though his services may be directed
by a third party outside the U.S., the right to direct and control remains with his
order within the U.S.