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Church Property

A Michigan court ruled that a city failed to acquire title to church property because the transaction had not been approved by a parent denomination as required by the church's bylaws.

Key point 4-06. Clergy who sign legal documents in their own name with no indication that they are signing in a representative capacity on behalf of their church may be personally liable on the document.
Key point 10-14. Churches may be liable on the basis of "ratification" for the unauthorized act of a minister or other church worker if it is aware of the act and voluntarily affirms it.
Contract Liability

* A Michigan court ruled that a city failed to acquire title to church property through a contract of sale and deed authorized by the church board and signed by the pastor because the transaction had not been approved by a parent denomination as required by the church's bylaws. A city sought to purchase real estate for a redevelopment project from a church that was affiliated with a denomination (the "regional church"). The board of trustees of the local church passed a corporate ...

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Posted:
  • November 3, 2003

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