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Personal Injuries on Church Property and During Church Activities

An Ohio court ruled that a woman could sue a church for injuries she sustained when she "stepped into the dark" and fell down a stairway.

Key point 7-20.1. In most states, whether a church is liable for injuries occurring on its premises will depend on the whether the victim is an invitee, a licensee, or a trespasser. Churches, like any property owner, owe the highest degree of care to invitees, a lesser degree of care to licensees, and a very minimal degree of care to trespassers. As a result, it is more likely that churches will be liable for injuries to persons who meet the definition of an "invitee."

Premises Liability

* An Ohio court ruled that a woman could sue a church for injuries she sustained when she "stepped into the dark" and fell down a stairway while returning to the main floor from the church balcony. A woman ("Mary") was attending an evening service at a church. She decided to sit in the balcony, which she accessed through a well-lit hallway. During the service, she decided to leave ...

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Posted:
  • July 1, 2002

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