Jump directly to the content

Confidential and Privileged Communications - Part 1

In order for the clergy-penitent privilege to apply there must be a communication that is made to a minister.

Key point 3-07.3. In order for the clergy-penitent privilege to apply there must be a communication that is made to a minister.
Key point 3-07.4. In order for the clergy-penitent privilege to apply there must be a communication that is made to a minister acting in a professional capacity as a spiritual adviser.
The Clergy-Penitent Privilege

* A Delaware court ruled that confidential statements made to a church deacon were not protected by the clergy-penitent privilege and therefore the deacon could be compelled to testify in court about them. A woman (the 'defendant') was charged with various sex offenses involving a minor. At her trial, the prosecutor sought to have a church deacon testify concerning incriminating statements made to him in confidence by the defendant. The defendant objected to this testimony, claiming that it was protected from disclosure by the clergy-penitent ...

Log In For Full Access

Interested in becoming a member? Learn more.

Richard R. Hammar is an attorney, CPA and author specializing in legal and tax issues for churches and clergy.

Related Topics:
Posted:
  • September 1, 2006

Related ResourcesVisit Store

Using Social Media Safely
Using Social Media Safely
Policies to keep your church staff and members safe when using social media.
12 Law & Tax Guidelines for New Ministers
12 Law & Tax Guidelines for New Ministers
Essential knowledge to ensure legal and financial clarity and integrity in ministry.
Managing the Legal Risks of Lay Counseling
Managing the Legal Risks of Lay Counseling
Develop specific policies and procedures that protect your church, lay caregivers, and those who receive care.
Best Practices for Technology Usage
Best Practices for Technology Usage
Establish policies and best practices to govern the use of technology for church staff.