LCR Check approvals

Discuss questions around local unit policies for budgeting, reconciling, etc. This forum should not contain specific financial or membership information.
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Biggles
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#11

Post by Biggles »

“Of course, as Biggles indicates, if you get people to set up for EFT that's even better. But unfortunately that doesn't work for most Fast Offerings checks since in the US EFT is only available for payments to members.”

To clarify - No payments are made by cheques, we no longer have any method to issue cheques. As long as we have the bank account details of the third party, then we can pay Fast Offerings. We are encouraged not to pay any funds directly to the FO beneficiary, but directly to the organisation concerned. So far this hasn’t presented any difficulties.
russellhltn
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#12

Post by russellhltn »

Biggles wrote: Mon Aug 30, 2021 8:34 am Is this option not available in the US?
Only to reimburse members and only if the member has set their account up for EFT.

I don't think there's any way to eliminate paper checks for things like rent payments (welfare assistance).

Obviously the UK system is quite different.
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davesudweeks
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#13

Post by davesudweeks »

If I recall correctly, some years ago, UK law changed and banks were no longer required to accept paper checks as legal tender (or were allowed to charge extra fees to handle them). I suspect that is what moved the entire country away from paper checks and the church had to accommodate the change.
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Biggles
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#14

Post by Biggles »

In the UK paper cheques are still widely available and used, but I’m guessing that the church decided to go the paperless route as electronic banking is far more efficient and far less wasteful. Banks still issue cheque books, because there are still circumstances that require the use of cheques. We no longer have to print out financial statements as they are all online now. In the last couple of years I think I have only written one paper cheque, as almost all of my transactions are done electronically. The push in the UK, is to go paperless as much as possible.
lajackson
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#15

Post by lajackson »

Biggles wrote: In the UK
You (U.K.) are ahead of us (U.S.) is this regard.

Before electronic contributions became available a General Authority from Europe was asked to move to Church headquarters. When he asked his new bishop for bank information to donate, he learned that he would have to open a bank account and order checks so that he could pay his tithing. He had not written a check in Europe for many years. I believe he was quite influential in getting online donations going in the U.S. It was fun to visit with him about it when he presided at our stake conference.

Many businesses here only accept paper checks. It is getting better, but almost all Fast Offering expenses must be completed by check.
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sbradshaw
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#16

Post by sbradshaw »

lajackson wrote: Tue Aug 31, 2021 12:25 pm Many businesses here only accept paper checks.
On the other hand, sometimes businesses even in the USA request electronic reimbursements instead of checks, and we have to twist their arm to take a check, since the Church system in the USA doesn't support electronic reimbursements for non-members. We're kind of in limbo between two systems, allowing every business to have their own preference. I hope we no longer have to use paper checks in 5–10 years, but we'll see…
Samuel Bradshaw • If you desire to serve God, you are called to the work.
jgoggan
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#17

Post by jgoggan »

eblood66 wrote: Mon Aug 30, 2021 9:58 am I don't know of any statement anywhere that says using physical receipts with checks is discouraged or that uploading receipts is preferred.
Interesting -- I assumed it was a National thing. We have been pushed by our Stake and from Auditors for the past several audits to move to digital receipts only as much as possible. I didn't realize that this might only be some local/Stake/Area directive?
Of course, as Biggles indicates, if you get people to set up for EFT that's even better. But unfortunately that doesn't work for most Fast Offerings checks since in the US EFT is only available for payments to members.
Exactly. The situation I was referring to was literally all Fast Offering checks.

I did see your suggestion about printing checks and then adding them later. And, sure, that works as a work-around. But I don't think it is a good long-term solution (or even what was intended in the design of the system). But, I'll likely do this myself in the future should the same situation arise (where I'm at the church trying to print checks on my own without another member present).

Thanks.
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#18

Post by jgoggan »

Biggles wrote: Mon Aug 30, 2021 10:35 amTo clarify - No payments are made by cheques, we no longer have any method to issue cheques. As long as we have the bank account details of the third party, then we can pay Fast Offerings. We are encouraged not to pay any funds directly to the FO beneficiary, but directly to the organisation concerned. So far this hasn’t presented any difficulties.
Yes, this would be almost impossible in the USA currently. Fast Offering checks often go to landlords, power companies, city governments, and so on -- NONE of which provide any way of paying electronically. All would require checks, unfortunately. We've always been behind here in the USA in those regards -- from electronic payments to credit card processing, and so on. Heck, we still have lots of places where you can't tap-to-pay with a credit card -- and even some that can't read chips yet and you have to SWIPE your credit card...
eblood66
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#19

Post by eblood66 »

jgoggan wrote: Wed Sep 01, 2021 12:40 pmInteresting -- I assumed it was a National thing. We have been pushed by our Stake and from Auditors for the past several audits to move to digital receipts only as much as possible. I didn't realize that this might only be some local/Stake/Area directive?
I expect it is a Stake thing although it might be the Area. As a stake clerk I can certainly see why the stake would prefer it. It provides better visibility for the stake clerk to review things and head off problems (i.e. provide training) early and it can make audits smoother.

But as you've stated, the system isn't really designed for quick check handling when using only electronic documentation. It's worked fine for me when I receive electronic documentation in the first place. I can create the expense at home, get it approved and then only go to print the check when it's all ready. But, given the current system, when given a fast offering expense bill which needs to be paid immediately, physical documents are definitely the way to go.

It wouldn't hurt to submit feedback on this issue outlining your stake's push for online documentation and the friction involved in the current system. It might not change anything right away but it might be considered for future changes.
jgoggan
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Re: LCR Check approvals

#20

Post by jgoggan »

Agreed -- but it still just feels really odd to me to go "Oh, you SAY that you have a paper receipt? Then go ahead and print a check whenever you want. I'll trust you on that." -- but then go "Oh, you've actually UPLOADED a receipt to PROVE that you have it? Then, sorry, you'll have to wait until someone else confirms it first before you can print a check. I just don't trust that you've actually got it, I guess."

Just seems very backwards to me. Oh well...
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