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Religious Institutions

Churches, synagogues, and other religious organizations have unique needs.

We have decades of experience representing religious organizations and non-profit organizations in Maryland. We understand the wide range of issues that religious organizations face, and we have the experience you need to find the right solutions, without unnecessarily expending church resources.

There’s a Reason More Religious Organizations Rely On Us.

We provide advice and guidance to religious organizations from all traditions. Our attorneys have the experience and sensitivity to help you handle:

  • Legal duties and liabilities of clergy, trustees, officers, and volunteers
  • Church policies and procedures
  • Pastoral counseling
  • Church tax law and tax exemptions
  • Tax breaks for clergy
  • Regulatory compliance
  • Child safety policies and compliance
  • Breach of contract and contract law
  • Employment matters
  • Organizational governance
  • Real estate sales, acquisitions, and leasing
  • First Amendment and other Constitutional Law protections
  • Mediation and alternative dispute resolution
  • Advocacy, litigation, and negotiation

Church Property Disputes and Divided Congregations

Disputes over church property and governance can arise within congregations, often with factions contesting control over church property and worship practices. Sometimes a local congregation will decide to break away from a church hierarchy, causing contention over the ownership of church property. In other circumstances, an independent church or congregation finds itself divided into rival factions. Often clergy is caught in the middle. In other circumstances, congregations have questions about tax breaks for churches.

These situations must be handled with the utmost care and sensitivity. It is in everyone’s best interest to resolve property or governance disputes without resorting to litigation. We understand that most faith-based organizations prefer to resolve disputes without resorting to the courts.  In those unfortunate situations when a lawsuit becomes inevitable, our litigation team is prepared to advocate in court on behalf of our faith-based clients. Our lawyers possess the experience and maturity that religious organizations need to navigate these difficult laws and issues.

You Take Care of the Congregation. We Will Take Care of your Organization’s Legal Interests.

We know that you need a responsive, caring legal partner that you can rely on. With our team in your corner, you will have the peace of mind knowing that you have a team behind you that understands church law. We’re focused on finding the best solutions so you can continue to grow your ministry and serve your religious community.

Talk to Us.

To find out how the law firm of Davis, Agnor, Rapaport & Skalny, LLC can help you handle the legal issues your organization faces, call us at 410.995.5800 or email an attorney from our Church Law and Religious Organization Practice Group.  We represent churches and religious organizations in matters before the state and federal courts located in Maryland and the District of Columbia.