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

Powers of a Local Church

§ 6.13

It often is necessary to determine the nature and extent of a church's powers, for a church's actions may be subject to challenge if they exceed the church's authority. As has been noted elsewhere,[423] See § 6-01, supra. unincorporated churches possess only such authority as is granted to them by state law. Many states have enacted legislation enabling unincorporated churches to sue and be sued and to hold property in the name of trustees. But without any specific delegation of authority from the state, an unincorporated church has no legal powers and must act in the name of its members.[424] Jacobs v. St. Mark's Baptist Church, 415 So.2d 253 (La. App. 1982).

In many states a church may incorporate under either a general ...

Log In For Full Access

Interested in becoming a member? Learn more.

Table of contents

This content is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is sold with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting, or other professional service. If legal advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought. "From a Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations."

Due to the nature of the U.S. legal system, laws and regulations constantly change. The editors encourage readers to carefully search the site for all content related to the topic of interest and consult qualified local counsel to verify the status of specific statutes, laws, regulations, and precedential court holdings.