Can person(s) have a proxy for an Annual Congregational meeting when voting on the annual church budget? Are there any guidelines of when it is permissible to have a proxy if you cannot attend a meeting because of what the person deems as an important reason?
Greg McRay responds:
Whether or not proxy voting is allowed depends on two things: state law and your bylaws. The IRS is silent on the matter. First, you need to know if your state nonprofit corporate law allows proxy voting. Many states, like the IRS, are silent on the issue, but some are not. Assuming it’s OK with your state, your bylaws need to specifically allow for it and spell out how it must work to be legitimate.
Also, some churches operate as an unincorporated association, in which case state corporate law wouldn’t apply. You would rely solely on the bylaws in most cases.