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No one expects to find their church involved in a lawsuit. Churches are filled with well-meaning Christians who come together for worship, fellowship, learning and missions. Unfortunately, however, legal conflicts between churches and outside entities or within the church are all too common. By practicing sound operating procedures and taking common-sense precautions, churches can avoid potentially crippling lawsuits.

These safeguards are not only necessary to prevent a financial loss, but are also crucial for compelling moral reasons. No church wants be sued by a disgruntled former employee, uncover child abuse, or be the site of an accident. Church members deserve the reassurance that their leaders are good stewards of their tithe and trust.

Whether starting a new church or celebrating a 100th anniversary as a congregation, Keeping Your Church OUT of Court, 3rd Edition is a great resource from the CLC that helps pastors and church members identify and rectify potential legal pitfalls.

Keeping Your Church OUT of Court is a legal resource manual for churches that focuses on prevention. The resource offers recommendations and suggestions on a wide variety of common legal issues affecting churches such as IRS compliance and employment law. Newer churches will find KYCOOC particularly helpful in insuring that basic church structure and policies provide the best possible legal standing and protection. For well established churches, KYCOOC can serve as a reference for common legal questions arise. After using this resource, churches will be educated and equipped to proactively confront challenging legal issues.

The Christian Life Commission, in partnership with the law firm of Bourland, Wall & Wenzel, P.C. of Ft. Worth, first published Keeping Your Church OUT of Court in 1995 and a second edition followed two years later. In those thirteen years, several revisions and updates in the law necessitated an updated edition.

In addition to providing this resource, the CLC and Bourland, Wall and Wenzel, P.C., will conduct seminars throughout the state to provide an overview of the material and answer any questions congregations may have. CLC staff members are working to schedule seminars in major Texas cities in 2008. Next year, the CLC will hold more seminars in more locations, including smaller towns in Texas. BGCT pastors will receive a notice of all dates and locations of seminars in the coming months.

To order a copy of Keeping Your Church OUT of Court, 3rd Edition please call the Christian Life Commission at 214-828-5190.