by Richard R. Hammar, J.D., LL.M., CPA

Negligent Selection of Church Workers—Other Cases

§ 10.06
Key point 10-06. A church may be legally responsible on the basis of negligent selection for injuries resulting from the acts of a minister or other worker not involving sexual misconduct.

Negligent selection claims are not limited to cases involving sexual misconduct. They can arise anytime that a church's failure to exercise reasonable care in the selection of an employee or volunteer leads to a foreseeable injury. Here are some examples:

  • Using adolescents as attendants in the church nursery.
  • Selecting adult workers without any training in CPR or other resuscitation techniques to accompany a youth group to any event involving swimming or boating.
  • Selecting lay counselors with inadequate professional training.
  • Selecting drivers for any church-sponsored activity without checking their driving record.

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