Official Scientology Refund Policy

Below is the Church of Scientology's refund policy as stated to the U.S. Internal Revenue Service during negotiations for tax-exempt status. According to this policy, former members can obtain refunds easily and quickly.

If you want a refund, I suggest that you write a letter to your CoS org and request one. Include a copy of this policy if you wish. Be sure to keep copies of all correspondence with the org and make notes of any phone conversations.

If you don't receive a refund promptly, I recommend that you seek the help of an attorney, who can write a letter on your behalf to encourage action.

Also, if you don't receive a speedy refund, please write a letter (including copies of your correspondence with CoS) to the House Ways & Means Committee. This is the congressional committee that oversees IRS operations, and committee members would want to know whether an organization granted tax-exempt status by the IRS is or is not adhering to its stated policy. That address is:

Committee on Ways and Means
U.S. House of Representatives
1102 Longworth House Office Bldg.
Washington, D.C. 20515
Attn: Hon. Bill Thomas, Chairman.

The following is the Church of Scientology's written response to IRS questions as part of Form 1023 filing. This information can be verified at the Exempt Organizations Reading Room in the IRS office in Washington, D.C. This document was created specifically to answer IRS questions on CoS public policy and is available for public viewing and reproduction; there is no indication that any of the wording is copyrighted material. However, in the event that some portions of the document may contain material copyrighted by the Church of Scientology or its affiliated organizations, I hereby assert that the following quotation is Fair Use because: (1) The purpose is criticism and comment. (2) I do not conduct commerce of any kind in connection with this quoted material. (3) The portion of text quoted is brief. (4) My quoting this excerpt does not supplant demand for the original work nor affect marketability of CoS copyrighted materials.

If the Church of Scientology attempts to use legal threats to silence this Fair Use, those attempts will be publicized to the media, to EFF's Chilling Effects Clearinghouse, anti-SLAPP organizations, the GILC, IFEA and DFC.

It has been a long-standing policy of the Church that if someone is dissatisfied with their Scientology services and asks to have their contributions returned within a three month period, these amounts will be returned. Likewise, if the person asks for return of contributions for which no services were received (i.e. an advance payment), there is no three month limitation period. Anyone newly enrolling in services at a Church of Scientology is informed of the policies and signs an agreement to abide by them. As a further condition of receiving a refund or repayment, the person understands that they may not again receive services from the Church.

Within the Church, there are two separate terms: A "refund" refers to a return of contributions to a parishioner within 90 days of participating in religious services while a "repayment" refers to a return of a parishioner's advance payment before he or she has participated in religious services. For simplicity, the following discussion will use the term "refund" to describe both types of transactions, because both involve a return of parishioner contributions.

The Church's refund policy is exceedingly fair. If someone isn't happy with Scientology -- which is a very small minority of people -- he simply has to make a proper request for his donations back, agree to forego further services and his donations will be returned. For the Church, in addition to the fact that this policy aligns with Scientology principles of exchange, it also serves the purpose of allowing our churches and the parishioners who are very happy with Scientology, to carry on without the unhappy few in their midst. END FAIR USE QUOTE.