9 Common Questions About ECFA Accreditation for Nonprofit Ministries

Thanks for considering ECFA accreditation!

You’re in great company with over 2,600 ministries and churches that have completed the application to become ECFA-accredited.

Check out the FAQs below:

  1. Why should our ministry join ECFA?

    If your ministry is committed to high standards of financial integrity, ECFA accreditation is a great way to demonstrate that commitment before your givers and a watching world.

    Displaying the ECFA seal of integrity and accountability can bring additional credibility for your ministry as you share the gospel and connect with givers.

    Plus, as an ECFA member, you’ll receive excellent resources and training to equip your staff on key financial management, governance, and gift administration issues.
  2. Where do I go to begin the online application?

    Visit ECFA.org/Join to begin the online application (select “Online Application”).
  3. What steps are involved in the process?

    The ECFA application is designed to confirm your ministry's commitment to ECFA’s Seven Standards for Responsible Stewardship. You will answer a series of questions in the online application form related to the standards and provide relevant supporting documentation.
  4. What supporting documents are required?

    This list of supporting documents may be uploaded and attached with the online application form or sent later by email to apply@ecfa.org.
  5. What type of financial statements are required to become a member?

    Most larger ministries will need to submit audited financials from an independent CPA. Some ministries with smaller budgets may be able to submit reviewed or compiled financial statements. (Click here to view ECFA's requirements for financial statements.)

  6. How long does it take to complete the application?

    We’ve designed the application to be as user-friendly as possible. The time required to complete the application varies by ministry, but if you have all supporting documents (see #4) ready, setting aside about 1-2 hours of uninterrupted time should be sufficient to answer most of the questions on the application form.
  7.  What happens after my application is submitted?

    After you complete the online application form and provide relevant supporting documentation, ECFA staff will follow up with you within 2 weeks to request any additional documents or information needed before the completed application is sent to the ECFA Board for consideration.

  8. What costs are involved?

    The initial application fee is $500. Check with us about an application fee waiver if you learned of ECFA from a recent conference or another referral. There is also an annual membership fee calculated based on your ministry's cash contribution income for the latest 12-month fiscal year. Keep in mind the most significant expense for ministries is the cost of financial statements prepared by an independent CPA required under ECFA Standard 3.

  9. Who can help with any other questions?

    Contact Julie Beasley, Senior Compliance Associate, at Julie or 800-323-9473. We’ll be sure you have the information you need as soon as possible.

    Click here for more FAQs.

    View Benefits of Accreditation: Click here.