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Pastor, Church & Law

written by Richard R. Hammar, J.D., LL.M., CPA

Other Defenses

Volume 4 . Chapter 10 . § 10-16.8
Key point 10-16.8. Churches have various defenses available to them if they are sued as a result of a personal injury. One such defense is an arbitration policy. By adopting an arbitration policy, a church can compel members to arbitrate specified disputes with their church rather than pursue their claim in the civil courts.

The courts have recognized various other defenses that are available to churches in the event of litigation. Here are some of them:

1. Status of the Person Causing the Injury or Damage

Since a church is liable only for the injuries and damages caused by employees and volunteers, a church generally will not be liable for injuries inflicted by independent contractors.

2. Course of Employment

Since a church is liable only for the ...

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