Samoa’s Church and State Settle Tax Stoush

June 28, 2018 Taxation in Samoa

Church tax in SamoaAPIA – The stand-off between the church and the state in Samoa may have come to an end, as the government backs down over its intention to tax church ministers.

The government of Samoa and the Congregational Christian Church of Samoa appear to have settled their standing dispute regarding the taxation of Ministers.

Earlier this year the government enacted new regulations which would make ministers liable to pay income taxes on the money they make as donations from their congregation.

Over the course of this week, the parliament of Samoa rushed through a new bill which amends the initial rules on the taxation of Ministers.

Under the new rules, Ministers will not pay income tax on the monies they receive as donations from funerals, weddings and other traditional occasions.

The Church has responded to say that they believe that the move is correct and that the income should not have been part of the initial rules at all.

The tax has been a hot topic issue in Samoa, as prior to the current development, the Church had simply refused the authority of the government to levy taxes on the Ministers’ incomes.