Key Point 8-24. A reference letter is a letter that evaluates the qualifications and suitability of a person for a particular position. Churches, like other employers, often use reference letters to screen new employees and volunteers. Churches often are asked to provide reference letters on current or former workers. The law generally provides employers with important protections when responding to a reference letter request. However, liability may still arise in some cases, such as if the employer acts with malice in drafting a reference letter.
A "reference letter" is a letter that evaluates the qualifications and suitability of a person for a particular position. There are a number of important legal issues associated with the use of reference letters, and some of them are addressed in this section.
A. Requesting Reference Letters as a Screening Device
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