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Church Law & Tax Report

July/August 1993
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Recent Developments

Recent Developments

Issues that affect ministers and churches, with Richard R. Hammar

Liability for Walk-In Freezers Subscriber access only

Recent case illustrates need to inspect such freezers.
Charitable Contributions

Contributions to Music Ministry Not Deductible Subscriber access only

Ministry not registered as an exempt organization.
Charitable Contributions

Distributing Leftover Funds from a Medical Fundraiser Subscriber access only

New Jersey court issues important ruling.

Tennessee Church Loses Property Dispute Case Subscriber access only

Church property will revert to denomination.

Backlash for Proposal Eliminating 1099 Requirement Subscriber access only

President's proposal would create "nightmare," critics argue.

Court: Diocese Does Not Have to Turn Over Records Subscriber access only

Montana law has strict protection of privacy.

Minister Cannot Testify to Alleged Demon Possession in Court Subscriber access only

But a testimony regarding a defendant's behavior in counseling is acceptable.

Christian Radio Station Guilty of Copyright Violations Subscriber access only

Conviction leads to more than $50,000 in damages.

Court: Religious Adoption Agency Can Discriminate in Hiring Subscriber access only

Religious organizations can discriminate based on religion of applicant.

Former Lutheran Synod Employee Loses Sex Discrimination Case Subscriber access only

Job loss was due to budgetary reasons, court said.

Pregnant Teacher's Discrimination Suit Can Move Forward Subscriber access only

Dispute centers around true reason for teacher's dismissal.

Court: Churches Can Be Used for Polling Places Subscriber access only

Benefits of holding elections at churches outweighs slight burden on freedom of religion.

Insurance Companies' Responsibility for Sexual Misconduct Trials Subscriber access only

Recent case shows a church's insurance policy may not cover costs from these trials.

Minnesota Prohibits Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation Subscriber access only

Exemption provided for religious organizations.

Minister Can Sue Denomination for Defamation, Court Rules Subscriber access only

But the minister can't sue for denomination's failure to follow bylaws.

Asserting 'Qualified Privilege' In Lawsuits Subscriber access only

In many states, this defense can be lost if churches don't assert it in an answer to a lawsuit.

Convicted Murderer Cannot Inherit Estate Subscriber access only

Man had killed his grandmother.

Church Wins Zoning Dispute Subscriber access only

Zoning commission had denied special permit for church building in a residential area.

Courts Can Limit Parent's Right to Involve Children in Religious Activities Subscriber access only

Such limitations based on best interests of the child.
Charitable Contributions

Tax Deductibility of Donations to Benevolence Funds Subscriber access only

Key is the size of the "class of potential beneficiaries."

Sexual Molestation Suit Against Priest, Church Dismissed Subscriber access only

Statute of limitations had expired.



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Confronting Peer Abuse in Your Church

Confronting Peer Abuse in Your Church  Subscriber access only

Learn how to watch and protect the children under your care from peer abuse at church.
Essential Guide to Liabilities and Duties for Church Boards

Essential Guide to Liabilities and Duties for Church Boards Subscriber access only

Be aware of ways you can expose yourself to personal legal liability.