Section Treasurer Information—Handbook

Inside the Financial Services Department | General | Bill Payment
Section Revenues | Financial Statements

Welcome to the SBM Section Treasurer FAQs section. You may click on the questions in order or click on a particular category of interest above.

 

rolodexInside the Financial Services Department

Who does what in the Financial Services Department?

General

What is the current mileage rate?

What is our Federal Tax ID number?

Are section purchases tax-exempt?

Where can I get a copy of the SBM tax exemption certificate?

Who should I contact when I have a financial question?

Are there any special tax issues if a section gives gift certificates, gift cards, or tangible gifts to section members or others?

Bill Payment

What is the difference between a check request, an invoice, a section payment form, and an expense reimbursement voucher?

When do invoices, check requests, section payments, and expense reimbursements need to be submitted for payment?

How do I get invoices paid?

How do I report meals for groups or council meetings?

How do section members get reimbursed for their expenses?

Where can I get blank forms?

Who is authorized to approve expenses?

Where do I get an IRS W-9 form and who should fill one out?

Section Revenues

How do I process and remit payments for seminars and publications orders?

Do we accept credit cards?

Where can I get the check transmittal form?

Do we need to charge sales tax on products we sell?

Financial Statements

What financial reports will I receive?

When will I receive my section's monthly financial statements?

What is a chart of accounts?

I found expenses on my financial statement that I didn't approve. What are they?

Unanswered questions? Contact us.


rolodexInside the Financial Services Department

Who does what in the Financial Services Department?

Jim Horsch is the director of finance and administration. He has overall responsibility for the State Bar of Michigan's financial function as well as facilities and other administrative support. You may reach him at (517) 346-6324 or jhorsch@michbar.org.

Becky Weaver is the financial services manager. She is responsible for overseeing the accounts payable functions, accounts receivable functions, and for distributing the section financial reports. You may reach her at (517) 346-6321 or bweaver@michbar.org.

Tina Bellinger is the finance specialist. She is responsible for cash receipting and section seminar assistance. She may be reached at (517) 346-6320 or tbellinger@michbar.org.

Carol Peterson is the finance specialist. She is responsible for dues processing. She may be reached at (517) 346-6377 or cpeterson@michbar.org.

Alpa Patel is the accounting specialist. She is responsible for accounts payable and section payment questions. She may be reached at (517) 346-6362 or apatel@michbar.org.

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General

What is the current mileage rate?

The State Bar of Michigan uses the I.R.S. standard mileage rate for reimbursing mileage.

  • For miles driven 1/1/2017 the rate is 53.5 cents per mile.
  • For miles driven 1/1/2016 through 12/31/2016 the rate is 54 cents per mile.

What is our Federal Tax ID number?

38-6006823

Are section purchases tax-exempt?

Yes, sections are tax-exempt under the State Bar of Michigan. We encourage you to provide the vendors that you do business with a copy of the State Bar of Michigan's tax exemption certificate. If the vendors have this certificate, they will not charge sales tax on your invoices.

Where can I get a copy of the SBM tax exemption certificate?

Call or e-mail Alpa Patel at (517) 346-6362 or apatel@michbar.org

Who should I contact when I have a financial question?

Payment of bills: Alpa Patel at (517) 346-6362 or apatel@michbar.org

Financial statements:

Are there any special tax issues if a section gives gift certificates, gift cards, or tangible gifts to section members or others?

Yes, this is an important issue if the section gives gifts to section members, speakers, or other individuals. Generally, if you give a gift card (retail store or restaurant, etc.), gift certificate, or tangible gift to an individual for an amount under $100, there are no tax consequences to the recipient and the State Bar is not required to collect any data for possible special tax reporting to the IRS. However, if you provide cash or a Visa or MasterCard gift card, it is considered taxable income to the recipient regardless of the amount, and we will require a form W-9 from the recipient. In addition, if you provide gift certificates or tangible gifts (other than recognition plaques and gavels) with a value of $100 or more, it is considered taxable income to the recipient regardless of the amount, and we will require a form W-9 from the recipient. If the total value of all gifts or other compensation from the State Bar to that individual is $600 or greater, we will issue a Form 1099 to the individual, with a copy to the State of Michigan and the IRS. If you have any questions on specific purchases that could trigger tax reporting, we suggest you contact the SBM Finance Department.

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Bill Payment

What is the difference between a check request, an invoice, a section payment form, and an expense reimbursement voucher?

An invoice is a bill from an outside source or vendor and should not appear on a voucher unless a section member has paid the invoice herself/himself.

An Expense Reimbursement Form is a form we supply for section members to use so they can obtain reimbursement for expenses they have incurred—examples are mileage, parking, lodging, etc.
Expense Reimbursement Form | Instructions

A Check Request Form is used if the expense is not a reimbursement and if you do not have an invoice. Donations are an example of an expense where a check request form would be used. Minutes approving the expense should be attached to a check request form. This form should also be used to request payment for section administrators and assistants.
Check Request Form

A Section Payment Form is used when payment for services are issued to a section member. Example: payments for newsletter editing.
Section Payment Form | Instructions

When do invoices, check requests, section payments, and expense reimbursements need to be submitted?

1) Each week, if your section payment is received by the SBM Finance staff by Wednesday at 2:00 p.m. and no further supporting documentation or approval is required, payment will be issued on Friday of the same week.

2) If you have any special requests outside of this schedule please contact Becky Weaver or Jim Horsch to make arrangements.

3) All expenses need to be submitted to the State Bar of Michigan, attention Finance Department, within 30 days of when the expense was incurred (within 45 days for expense reimbursements).

4) At fiscal year-end (September 30 of each year), the sections will receive notification from the SBM Finance staff indicating the deadline to submit revenue and expenses incurred for the fiscal year just ended.

How do I get invoices paid?

Invoices must be submitted to the State Bar of Michigan with the section treasurer's signature on it indicating authorization to pay. The general ledger account number(s) that you want the expense to be charged to should also appear on the invoice. If an invoice is submitted to the State Bar of Michigan directly from a vendor or from a section member other than the treasurer, you may e-mail authorization for payment to Alpa Patel at apatel@michbar.org. Please include in your e-mail, the vendor, invoice number, amount to pay, explicit authorization to pay, and account numbers to charge the expenses.

How do I report meals for groups or council meetings?

When you send in a bill for a group or council meeting, you must include a list of attendees. There are three options for you to provide this information:

  1. An attendance sheet.
  2. A copy of the minutes.
  3. If the meeting is for the council, you may include a statement that indicates only the council present, the council except for named individuals, or the council including named individuals.

How do section members get reimbursed for their expenses?

By filling out an Expense Reimbursement Form (instructions), attaching appropriate receipts, and having the section treasurer approve the reimbursement request. Receipts are recommended for all expenses, but detailed receipts are required for expenses over $25. An example of a detailed receipt is a receipt that shows all items purchased at a restaurant including drinks, food items, and the cost for each item. Payments to vendors for $5,000 or greater are not reimbursable. Payments to vendors for $5,000 or greater should be paid directly by the State Bar.

Where can I get blank forms?

Blank expense reimbursement forms, check request forms, and payment request forms can be downloaded here:

Who is authorized to approve expenses?

All expense vouchers and invoices must be approved by the section treasurer or chair. Expense vouchers to reimburse a section treasurer must be approved by the section chair and vice versa.

Where do I get an IRS W-9 form and who should fill one out?

All vendors (individuals and companies) must have an IRS W-9 on file with us before we can process payment to them. This form indicates to us whether or not the vendor should receive an IRS 1099. A W-9 is not necessary if the payment is for reimbursement (mileage, lodging, etc) only. This form may be downloaded at http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw9.pdf.

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Section Revenues

How do I process and remit payments for seminars and publications orders?

We accept two forms of payments. Check or credit card. Please see details as listed below:

Checks: To submit checks received for seminars, publication orders, etc., please fill out a Check Transmittal Form. Sections need to maintain confidentiality of any check information and store checks in a secure location until submitted to the State Bar of Michigan Finance Department. Mail the checks, along with the completed check transmittal form, and accompanying documentation (registration form, publication order form, etc) to the State Bar of Michigan Attn: Finance Department), 306 Townsend St., Lansing, MI 48933. Checks should be made payable to the State Bar of Michigan and mailed as soon as practicable, but not longer than three business days, to the Finance Department. Please do not hold checks. Once checks are submitted to the Finance Department, sections should not retain any check information or copies of checks. All check information, as required, is securely maintained by the Finance Department.

Credit Cards (Including Debit Cards): The State Bar of Michigan accepts Visa and MasterCard credit and debit card payments for seminar registrations and publication orders online only.

Credit card payments shall not be accepted by the section over the telephone, by e-mail, by fax, by U.S. mail, or by payment in-person.

Cash: Cash payments should not be accepted or submitted by mail to the State Bar of Michigan.

Do we accept credit cards?

Yes—Visa and MasterCard online only.

Where can I get the check transmittal form?

That can be downloaded here.

Do we need to charge sales tax on products we sell?

Yes, you need to charge 6% sales tax on pamphlet, books, videos, etc.

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Financial Statements

What financial reports will I receive?

Each month you will receive by e-mail two financial statements. One financial statement is a summary of your section's financial activity. It shows the total amount for each revenue and expense account for the current month and for the year to date. Your ending fund balance is also shown. Your ending fund balance is calculated by adding your beginning fund balance on October 1 plus your year-to-date income less your year-to-date expense, see an example of this report. The other report is a detailed listing by account of all your section's expenses to date, see an example of this report.

When will I receive my section's monthly financial statements?

You should receive your monthly financial statements approximately 10 business days after the end of the month. Sometimes this is delayed due to staff vacations and fluctuations in bank statement mailing dates. Also, the September financial statements will always be sent much later due to the year-end closing process.

What is a chart of accounts?

Your chart of accounts consists of 11 digits divided into 5 segments. See an example of a section's chart of accounts.

The first segment is one digit long. The "1" indicates this is the company "State Bar of Michigan." You will always use a "1" in the first segment for all your account numbers.

The second segment is also only one digit. Use a "7" to indicate revenue and a "9" for expenses.

The third segment is two digits and will always be "99" indicating "section."

The fourth segment is three digits and represents the specific section. For example, "475" is the number for the Health Care Section.

The fifth segment is four digits long and represents the activity. For example, 1050 is dues revenue and 1826 is copying.

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I found expenses on my financial statement that I didn't approve. What are they?

The State Bar of Michigan provides some services for a fee. If someone else in your section requested this service, you may be unaware of the charges. For example, there may be costs associated with your newsletter—printing, postage, and label charges. Your section may also request seminar assistance from the State Bar of Michigan, which may result in labor, postage, and name badge charges. If you need help identifying the origin of an expense please contact Becky Weaver at (517) 346-6321 or bweaver@michbar.org.

Inside the Financial Services Department| General | Bill Payment
Section Revenues | Financial Statements