Jump directly to the Content

Christian College Not Liable for Sexual Misconduct of Former Student Hired by a Church

Churches should be aware that states are divided on liability based on recommendations related to hiring.

Key point. While employers may not have a duty to provide a reference about a former employee, if they choose to do so they may be liable if they fail to disclose information suggesting that the individual may pose a risk of harm to others.

A Missouri court ruled that a religious school was not liable for the sexual misconduct of a former student on the ground that it provided a positive reference to a church on the offender.

Church sues college over positive recommendation

A Christian college (the “College”) is an independent college that prepares students for ministry. On occasion, individual churches needing to fill open positions contact the College for recommendations. However, the individual churches, and not the College, make the ultimate hiring decisions.

Based upon the College’s positive recommendation, a church hired an employee (the “offender”) in 2004. ...

Join now to access this member-only content

Become a Member

Already a member? for full access.

Related Topics:
Posted:
  • July 22, 2020

Related ResourcesVisit Store

Immigration & the Church
Immigration & the Church
Keep your church safe and legal and as you strive to serve the immigrant communities in your context.
Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition
Pastor, Church & Law, Fifth Edition
Learn which local, state, and federal laws apply to religious organizations.
Understanding Pastoral Liability
Understanding Pastoral Liability
Know the situations in which a pastor is personally liable for wrongdoing.
Board Member Orientation
Board Member Orientation
The concise and complete guide to nonprofit board service