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Arbitration of Disputes

Arbitration is a potential way to resolve church disputes without going to the civil courts.

Iowa
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Key point 7-04. Churches and denominational agencies can avoid church property disputes by adopting appropriate nondoctrinal language in deeds, trusts, local church bylaws, or denominational bylaws.

Key point 10-16.8. Churches have various defenses available to them if they are sued as a result of a personal injury. One such defense is an arbitration policy. By adopting an arbitration policy, a church can compel members to arbitrate specified disputes with their church rather than pursue their claim in the civil courts.

An Iowa court compelled a church to submit to the arbitration of a dispute it had with a denominational agency as a result of an arbitration provision in the agency's governing documents. A pastor wrote his denomination (the "national church") informing it that his church had voted unanimously to withdraw from the national church. An officer of the national church informed ...

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Posted:
  • March 1, 2013

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