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Church Business Meetings

• During a regular church business meeting, a member moved to terminate the services of the church's minister. Of the members present, 42 voted to retain the minister, and 32 voted to remove him. In addition, one of the 32 dissidents produced a list of 57 proxy (absentee) votes to remove the minister from office. The moderator of the business meeting refused to recognize the proxy votes, and the attempt to remove the minister failed. The dissident members thereafter filed a lawsuit seeking a court order upholding the validity of proxy votes in church business meetings. A state trial court ruled against the dissidents, and the case was appealed directly to the Alaska Supreme Court. In an important decision, the court reversed the trial court and held that the proxy votes should have been counted. It based its decision on the provisions of the Alaska Nonprofit Corporations Act (under ...

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Posted:
  • September 1, 1987

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