Church Law & Tax Report

January/February 1996
Articles with a Member Access Only are available only to members.

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Tax Changes of Interest to Churches Member access only

Changes churches should know.

Recent Developments

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

Civil Courts and Church Bylaws Member access only

Court does not overturn decisions made at congregational meeting with procedural irregularities.

Courts and Church Membership Member access only

Court dismisses lawsuit by excommunicated church members.

Court Awards Church Property to Denomination Member access only

Church had been affiliated with a hierarchical denomination.

Church Keeps Its Property After Leaving Denomination Member access only

Court rules in favor of church despite denomination's bylaws.

Neutral Principles' in Church Property Disputes Member access only

Courts can intervene in church property disputes without impeding on religious freedom.

Ministers and Wrongful Dismissal Member access only

Court says minister cannot sue for dismissal.

Copyright Violations at Conferences Member access only

Organizers may be liable for infringement by exhibitors.

Age Discrimination at Religious Schools Member access only

Courts generally cannot intervene in these cases.

Religious Discrimination at Religious Organizations Member access only

Religious freedom allows this type of discrimination in most cases.

Defamation and Calls for Resignation Member access only

Letter asking for resignation was not defamatory, court rules.

Retirement Plans and Clergy Dismissal Member access only

Courts often cannot get involved in such disputes.

Church Responsibility for Clergy Abuse Member access only

If negligence is not proven, churches generally aren't liable in sexual abuse cases.

Church Responsibility for Clergy Misconduct Member access only

If negligence is not proven, churches generally aren't liable in misconduct cases.

Tax Rules on Church Campgrounds Member access only

Court rules church's campground not exempt from property taxes.

Book Sales and Business Income Tax Member access only

Book sales by organization founder closely related to group's business, court rules.
Charitable Contributions

Gifts of Property and 'Undue Influence'

Gifts of property in a decedent's will can be invalidated.

Church Liability for Acts of Child Molestation Member access only

An important ruling addresses several key issues.

Ministers and Wrongful Dismissal Member access only

Courts can intervene if there's no need for inquiry into religious doctrine.