Page 1 of 2

Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Tue Nov 16, 2021 7:36 pm
by omegafletch
I have seen a few old topics about this but I am curious how to proceed on this.

We have a missionary that returned home and a family member donated several thousand dollars to their account before they came home. I am a fairly new clerk and was left with this issue. I have heard some say that it is ok to adjust the donation into a tithing payment for the member, as there are no other family members currently on missions to transfer the funds too. The donating member is in another ward in our stake. The donation was made back in 2019. Is it ok to go into the donation and change it from ward missionary to an other category, and then transfer that to the members ward so they can transfer it to that person's tithing?

If not is there another way to do that, like cutting an expense check to that ward for them to deposit into his tithing account?

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Tue Nov 16, 2021 8:11 pm
by jdlessley
omegafletch wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 7:36 pm I have seen a few old topics about this but I am curious how to proceed on this.
The short answer is there is nothing you can do for the member who made the large donation.
omegafletch wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 7:36 pm I have heard some say that it is ok to adjust the donation into a tithing payment for the member, as there are no other family members currently on missions to transfer the funds too.
What you heard only applies to current year donations and only for members in your ward.
omegafletch wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 7:36 pmIs it ok to go into the donation and change it from ward missionary to an other category...
Because the donor's record is not in your ward you do not have access to make that change.
omegafletch wrote: Tue Nov 16, 2021 7:36 pmIf not is there another way to do that ...
Adjustments to closed financial years is only possible by headquarters. I doubt they would do that under your request. The donor's ward would have to contact support to see what can be done, if anything at all. I doubt headquarters would make any changes.

The only thing you can do is to transfer the excess funds into the ward missionary fund. From there funds can be transferred to other ward missionary categories for missionaries serving from your ward or any excess funds can be transferred to the stake for distribution to other missionaries in the stake needing financial support.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:19 am
by Biggles
The only thing you can do is to transfer the excess funds into the ward missionary fund. From there funds can be transferred to other ward missionary categories for missionaries serving from your ward or any excess funds can be transferred to the stake for distribution to other missionaries in the stake needing financial support.
You can in fact transfer directly from your ward missionary account directly in to the ward missionary account of another ward in your stake.

I carried this out for the first time, under the authorisation of my Bishop this last Monday, using the Transfer function in LCR.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 2:51 am
by russellhltn
Biggles wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:19 am You can in fact transfer directly from your ward missionary account directly in to the ward missionary account of another ward in your stake.
Even so, it needs to be coordinated though the stake.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:43 am
by Biggles
russellhltn wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 2:51 am
Biggles wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 1:19 am You can in fact transfer directly from your ward missionary account directly in to the ward missionary account of another ward in your stake.
Even so, it needs to be coordinated though the stake.
My response was purely to make it clear that the physical transfers like this don't have to go via the Stake first.

I wasn't privy to the origins of the request, but I guess this originally raised by the Stake to assist the other ward.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 11:41 am
by davesudweeks
In my experience, our Stake Presidency monitors the individual ward missionary funds. If one unit has excess and one unit is short, he will ask the bishop to transfer some of the excess to another unit to help (I have served as clerk when some of those transfer requests were forwarded from the bishop). I assume he communicates with both bishops on the availability and needs first, but have not served that close to the SP to know his process.

I don't think one unit can see another units missionary fund status so the transfer request would need to be initiated by someone with access to view both unit's funds.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 12:48 pm
by russellhltn
Biggles wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 3:43 am I wasn't privy to the origins of the request, but I guess this originally raised by the Stake to assist the other ward.
I think OP was trying to resolve a situation where a return missionary's account had a large leftover balance caused by a large donation right at the end of the mission.

Because the donation was made in 2019, the options are limited. We were trying to advise him of the proper way it could be "disposed of" to zero out the account. Helping another missionary in the stake is certainly a possibility, but is something that needs to be discussed before doing the transfer.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Wed Nov 17, 2021 9:02 pm
by omegafletch
Ok, I wondered about that fact that it was from 2019 causing an issue. I don't think the stake has asked us to do anything on this. It is the missionaries mother trying to get the funds resolved. his donation shows up on my wards donation summary list, so even though it appears the donation was made directly to our ward I can't adjust it?

So it basically sounds like there is no other option besides the donor having their donation essentially "lost" and being distributed to other missionaries either in his ward or the stake?

What happens if I "expense" a check out of the ward missionary fund (of the RM) either to the donor's ward or him directly? This question comes because I originally was going to transfer it to another member of the donor's family that was on a mission, but that ward was out of the stake. That just had me cut a check to mail. Ended up voiding that as that missionary was home as well.

Or do I just transfer it to that ward and leave that between him and his ward clerk to figure out what to do with it?

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Thu Nov 18, 2021 12:31 am
by russellhltn
omegafletch wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 9:02 pm Ok, I wondered about that fact that it was from 2019 causing an issue. I don't think the stake has asked us to do anything on this. It is the missionaries mother trying to get the funds resolved. his donation shows up on my wards donation summary list, so even though it appears the donation was made directly to our ward I can't adjust it?
From what others indicated, because it's in a prior year, you're not going to be able to adjust it on your own. You'd have to go back to support. But given how much time has lapsed, I don't know as they're going to be cooperative.
omegafletch wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 9:02 pmWhat happens if I "expense" a check out of the ward missionary fund (of the RM) either to the donor's ward or him directly?
I'm not sure if you can. And it would be a violation of policy if you did. It may also be a violation of tax law since the donor could have taken a tax deduction for that donation but then it's used in a way that wouldn't qualify for a deduction.

I'd suggest reading the following from the Handbook:

34.4.3 - Missionary Funds (Which includes what to do with excess funds.)

24.3.4.1 - Financing Young Missionaries Serving Away from Home (Includes caution against paying in advance.)

34.4.9 - Contributions Not to Be Refunded

omegafletch wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 9:02 pmOr do I just transfer it to that ward and leave that between him and his ward clerk to figure out what to do with it?
They would have the same problem. They'd need to find a missionary to support or send it to church headquarters.
I'd refer to section 34.4.9.

Re: Returned Missionary Balance

Posted: Thu Nov 18, 2021 12:36 pm
by scgallafent
omegafletch wrote: Wed Nov 17, 2021 9:02 pmWhat happens if I "expense" a check out of the ward missionary fund (of the RM) either to the donor's ward or him directly? This question comes because I originally was going to transfer it to another member of the donor's family that was on a mission, but that ward was out of the stake. That just had me cut a check to mail. Ended up voiding that as that missionary was home as well.
What happens? You put the Church at risk and also risk the tax-deductible status of these donations. Once they are donated, they cannot be returned to the donor unless there was an obvious error with the donation. russellhltn has given you the General Handbook references.