Law

Adoption Tax Credit • FEMA Lawsuit • Hate Crime Statistics: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Adoption Tax Credit • FEMA Lawsuit • Hate Crime Statistics: News Roundup
Image: Erol Ahmed / Unsplash

House, Senate Restore Adoption Tax Credit in Tax Reform Plan. “Apopular tax credit for adoptive families that was controversially cut by House Republicans in their initial tax reform plan has finally been restored. Meanwhile, the adoption benefit will be preserved in the ...

Texas Church Shooting • Proposed Tax Plan • Abuse Lawsuit: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Texas Church Shooting • Proposed Tax Plan • Abuse Lawsuit: News Roundup
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Twenty-Six Churchgoers Killed in Texas Mass Shooting. “During its 11 a.m. worship service, a Southern Baptist church in rural Texas suffered not only America’s latest mass shooting but the deadliest church shooting in US history. At least 26 worshipers, ranging in ...

Sex Offenders in Church • HHS Request • Zoning Lawsuit: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Sex Offenders in Church • HHS Request • Zoning Lawsuit: News Roundup
Image: Jon Goldstein / Unsplash

Indiana Court Rules Sex Offenders May Go to Church Services When Children Are Present. “The Indiana Court of Appeals has ruled that sex offenders are allowed to attend church services even while children are present to attend Sunday school. The ruling handed down Tuesday ...

IRS Announcement • Zoning Refusals • Baptism Lawsuit: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
IRS Announcement • Zoning Refusals • Baptism Lawsuit: News Roundup
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IRS Will No Longer Accept Tax Returns with Unaddressed Health Coverage Requirements. “The Internal Revenue Service said that for the upcoming 2018 filing season, it‎ will not accept electronically filed tax returns where the taxpayer does not address the health coverage ...

9 Steps Employers Should Take to Comply with the ADA
What churches should be aware of as they hire and train staff members.
9 Steps Employers Should Take to Comply with the ADA
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  1. Prepare job descriptions for all employees. Be sure to itemize essential job functions. These are functions that are job related and required by business necessity. Do not list functions that will not be required in performing the job in question.
  2. Review job application forms and eliminate any question that segregates or classifies applicants on the basis of disability.
IRS Sermon Oversight • False Tax Exemption • Sexual Abuse Charges: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
IRS Sermon Oversight • False Tax Exemption • Sexual Abuse Charges: News Roundup
Image: Stephen Radford / Unsplash

Survey Shows Protestant Pastors Oppose IRS Sermon Oversight. “In the 1950s, Congress banned charitable nonprofits—including churches—from endorsing candidates or otherwise intervening in elections. Any nonprofit that violated the ban could run afoul of the ...

Birth Control Coverage • Sanctuary Church • Water Pressure Lawsuit: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Birth Control Coverage • Sanctuary Church • Water Pressure Lawsuit: News Roundup
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Trump Administration Announces New Birth Control Rules. “More employers—including Christian-run businesses and nonprofits—can opt out of contraception coverage required under the Affordable Care Act thanks to new rules issued by the Trump administration. The ...

5 Takeaways from the Clergy Housing Allowance Ruling
What a federal judge’s opinion does—and doesn’t—mean at this point.
5 Takeaways from the Clergy Housing Allowance Ruling
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Editor’s Note: Last Friday, Judge Barbara Crabb of the District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin struck down the ministerial housing allowance as an unconstitutional preference for religion. Senior Editor Richard R. Hammar offers five takeaways from this ruling, ...

Trump Tax Plan • Church Security • ‘Tiny House’ Debate: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Trump Tax Plan • Church Security • ‘Tiny House’ Debate: News Roundup
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Study Examines Potential Effects of Trump’s Tax Plan. “If you make between $50,000 and $100,000 a year, you’ll probably give less to charity under President Donald Trump’s proposed tax plan. So says a study commissioned by Independent Sector, a coalition ...

Church Shooting • FEMA Funding • Theft Charges: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Church Shooting • FEMA Funding • Theft Charges: News Roundup
Image: Jp Valery / Unsplash

Tennessee Church Shooting Leaves One Dead, Six Wounded. “The man accused of opening fire at a church near Nashville, Tennessee, on Sunday, leaving one parishioner dead and six wounded, had previous encounters with local police, including one after a relative worried he ...

Tax Exemption Controversy • Background Checks • Ohio Sanctuary Church: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Tax Exemption Controversy • Background Checks • Ohio Sanctuary Church: News Roundup
Image: Michael / Unsplash

Wisconsin Church’s Potential Property Tax ExemptionStirs Controversy. “For years St. Raphael’s Parish has been fighting, and losing, a battle with the city of Madison over property taxes on the land at the corner of East Main and North Fairchild streets that ...

Church and State Debate • Trump’s Texas Tweets • DOJ Brief: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Church and State Debate • Trump’s Texas Tweets • DOJ Brief: News Roundup
Image: James Newcombe / Unsplash

Debate over Churches Receiving Public Funds for Restoration Goes to Massachusetts Supreme Court. “Massachusetts’s highest court wrestled [on September 7] over whether allowing houses of worship to receive public funds for restoration inappropriately blurs the line ...

FEMA Faces Discrimination Lawsuits from Texas Churches
Churches flooded by Hurricane Harvey claim the agency violated the First Amendment.
FEMA Faces Discrimination Lawsuits from Texas Churches
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As relief efforts continue across areas affected by Hurricane Harvey, three Texas churches sued the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) this week after their application for disaster relief grants had been denied.

According to Church Law & Tax sister publication Christianity ...

Overtime Rule Invalidated • Joel Osteen Backlash • Trump Ends DACA: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Overtime Rule Invalidated • Joel Osteen Backlash • Trump Ends DACA: News Roundup
Image: Jens Kreuter / Unsplash

Texas District Court Invalidates DOL Overtime Rule.“The Department of Labor (DOL) exceeded its authority when it doubled the minimum salary levels for exempt executive, professional, and administrative employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), ruled federal ...

Responding to Injuries at Church
What to do when employees or volunteers get hurt.
Responding to Injuries at Church
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A pastor falls off a ladder while hanging a banner. A volunteer trips while playing with second-graders in the kids ministry. A staff member gets injured during an on-site church activity.

Injuries are surprisingly common at churches. Responding quickly to them can help get an ...

Hurricane Response • $800,000 Theft • Church Festival Fine: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Hurricane Response • $800,000 Theft • Church Festival Fine: News Roundup
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Christians’ Response to Hurricane Harvey. “If current projections hold true, Hurricane Harvey will be the strongest hurricane to strike the United States since Katrina, Rita, and Wilma hit in 2005. A decade ago, maybe your church volunteered, planned a short-term ...

Statutes of Limitation Removed • Opposition to Johnson Amendment Repeal • Misusing Church Accounts: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
Statutes of Limitation Removed • Opposition to Johnson Amendment Repeal • Misusing Church Accounts: News Roundup
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Statutes of Limitation for Sexual Abuse Removed in Illinois. “Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner has signed legislation that will remove the statutes of limitation for sexual abuse crimes. . . . Statutes of limitation restrict the time when authorities can charge someone after ...

School’s Denial • Homeless Housing Stir • Two Dead in Church Shooting: News Roundup
This week’s headlines that affect churches and church leaders.
School’s Denial • Homeless Housing Stir • Two Dead in Church Shooting: News Roundup
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Judge Upholds Catholic School’s Decision to Deny Attendance to Parent’s Children. “A judge on Monday [August 14] refused to order a Catholic school to accept two girls who were denied re-enrollment after their parents sued the school to get one of the daughters ...

Protecting Your Church in Case of Allegations of Abuse
Protecting Your Church in Case of Allegations of Abuse
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Around a year ago, attorney Richard J. Mathewsshared lessons he learned from advising the Boy Scouts of America during the organization’s child sexual abuse crisis. ManagingYourChurch.com recently interviewed him regarding what churches should know about insurance coverage ...

South Carolina Supreme Court Rules Against Breakaway Diocese’s Property Claims
What a recent ruling says about church property disputes.
South Carolina Supreme Court Rules Against Breakaway Diocese’s Property Claims
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The South Carolina Supreme Court has reached a split ruling in a case involving a breakaway diocese of the Episcopal Church, stating that the now-separate diocese will not be able to keep the historic properties it tried to claim from the denomination—properties worth ...

The 4 Hour Legal Training Program for Church Boards

The 4 Hour Legal Training Program for Church Boards

Understand key legal concepts necessary to protect the board and the church.
Church Property & Administration: Volume 2 of Pastor, Church & Law

Church Property & Administration: Volume 2 of Pastor, Church & Law

Topics: inspection of records, federal reporting requirements, incorporation, zoning laws, and more.