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Negligent Supervision and Sexual Offenses

A court rejected a plaintiff's attempt to treat national, regional, and local churches as a "single employer" for liability purposes.

Key point 10-10.2. Many courts have ruled that the First Amendment prevents churches from being legally responsible on the basis of negligent supervision for the sexual misconduct of ministers.

Key point 10-18.2. Most courts have refused to hold denominational agencies liable for the acts of affiliated ministers and churches, either because of First Amendment considerations or because the relationship between the denominational agency and affiliated church or minister is too remote to support liability.

* A federal court in Washington ruled that it was barred by the First Amendment guaranty of religious freedom from resolving a former church office administrator's claim that a denominational agency was responsible on the basis of negligent supervision for sexual offenses made toward her by the church's senior pastor. Sarah was employed as a church's office administrator by a "missions" church ...

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Posted:
  • January 1, 2007

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