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Clergy

Key rights and potential liabilities for ordained religious leaders; counseling, penitent privilege

New MexicoNew Mexico
New Mexico

New Mexico Court: Child Abuse Reporting Laws Did Not Apply to Pastor’s Testimony Member access only

The defendant in this case was protected by both the clergy-penitent privilege and state statute.
OhioOhio

Court Allows Pastor’s Wrongful Dismissal Lawsuit to Proceed Member access only

What church leaders should note about this surprising decision by a federal court in Ohio.
IowaIowa

Defamation Claim Dismissed Due to Church’s “Qualified Privilege” Member access only

Case illustrates a protection church leaders may receive when communicating negative information with members—but caution must be exercised.
IllinoisIllinois

Failure to Conduct Criminal Background Check Showed Negligence Member access only

This court case demonstrates the need for churches to properly screen candidates for youth and children’s positions.
FloridaFlorida

Sexual Abuse Conviction Upheld Despite the Defendant’s Claim His Pastor Broke Privilege Member access only

A man was sentenced to two life terms in prison for sexual battery and lewd or lascivious molestation of his stepdaughter.
10 Key Tax Developments Affecting Churches and Pastors in 2022
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10 Key Tax Developments Affecting Churches and Pastors in 2022 Member access only

What you need to understand for 2021 filing and 2022 compliance.
TennesseeTennessee

A Fired Pastor’s Defamation Suit Is Dismissed Member access only

Appeals court said the lawsuit was barred due to the “ecclesiastical abstention doctrine.”
ColoradoColorado

Pastor Denied Injunction Aimed at Stopping Online Critic Member access only

First Amendment speech protections mean a minister’s only recourse is a defamation lawsuit.
CaliforniaCalifornia

Pastor Guilty of Securities Fraud Member access only

Court sentenced pastor to nearly 25 years in prison for swindling his congregation, and others.
IndianaIndiana

Pastor’s Conversation with the Defendant Allowed in Murder Case Member access only

The trial court did not abuse its discretion by letting the pastor testify.
MichiganMichigan

Pastor Allowed to Testify at a Man’s Sexual Abuse Trial Member access only

Appeals court determined that the pastor acted in the role of a friend and the clergy-penitent privilege did not apply.
FloridaFlorida

Are Ministers Always Exempt from State-Required Counseling Licenses? Member access only

A Florida appeals court’s decision offers a rare look at the elements necessary for a licensing exemption to apply.

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