Religious Organizations Function Differently from Other Non-profits: What Lawyers Should Know about the US Constitution and Religious Organizations


CLE credits earned: 2 GENERAL (or 2 LAW & LEGAL for WA state)

The United States Constitution impacts religious organizations in ways that might surprise congregations, ministers, lawyers and even judges. How does the day-to-day life of a religious organization function differently from that of other non-for-profits or from for-profit corporations? What should lawyers understand in representing religious organizations?

This course is co-sponsored with myLawCLE.

Key topics to be discussed:

•   What should religious organizations be doing to protect themselves while complying with the law?
•   How should their lawyers guide them?
•   Which Constitutional principles should be applied to a religious organization’s structure, governance and administration?
•   How should hierarchical church organizations be guided by these principles on a daily basis?

Date / Time: January 20, 2020

•   2:00 pm – 4:00 pm Eastern
•   1:00 pm – 3:00 pm Central
•   12:00 pm – 2:00 pm Mountain
•   11:00 pm – 1:00 pm Pacific

Choose a format:

•   Live Video Broadcast/Re-Broadcast: Watch Program “live” in real-time, must sign-in and watch program on date and time set above. May ask questions during presentation via chat box. Qualifies for “live” CLE credit.
•   On-Demand Video: Access CLE 24/7 via on-demand library and watch program anytime. Qualifies for self-study CLE credit. On-demand versions are made available 7 business days after the original recording date and are view-able for up to one year.

Select your state to see if this class is approved for CLE credit.

Choose the format you want.


Original Broadcast Date: September 24, 2019

Barry Black, Esq. is the Religion Law columnist for the New York Law Journal. He has focused much of his law practice on religious institutions and clergy, from employment and governance issues to litigation, alternative dispute resolution and First Amendment advocacy. He has extensive knowledge of and experience with administration and governance issues. He has represented religious organizations and associations of various faiths and denominations, municipalities and ministers, as well as individual litigants in matters connected with the First Amendment and Religion Law. He has counseled and represented both religious institutions and ministers on clergy-related issues, such as employment, parsonage allowance, taxes, and retirement.

A former New York City law firm litigation partner, Mr. Black’s clients have ranged from municipalities and banking institutions to corporations involved in international litigation. Mr. Black is experienced in trial and post-verdict litigation. He has written and lectured extensively on the subject of Religion Law.

Accreditation Policy
myLawCLE seeks accreditation for all programs in all states. (Accreditation for paralegals sought thru NALA and NFPA paralegal associations.) Each attending attorney/paralegal will receive a certificate of completion following the close of the CLE program as proof of attendance. In required states, myLawCLE records attorney/paralegals attendance, in all other states attorney/paralegal is provided with the approved CLE certificate to submit to their state bar or governing association.

    Automatic MCLE Approvals

All myLawCLE CLE programs are accredited automatically either directly or via reciprocity in the following states: AK, AR, CA, CT, FL, HI, ME, MO, MT, ND, NH, NM, NJ, NY, WV, and VT. (AZ does not approve CLE programs, but accepts our certificates for CLE credit.)

    Live Video Broadcasts

Live video broadcasts are new live CLE programs being streamed and recorded for the first time. All of these programs qualify for “Live” CLE credit in all states except NV, OH, MS, IN, UT, PA, GA, SC, and LA —these states require in-person attendance to qualify for “Live” CLE credit.

    “Live” Re-Broadcasts

“Live” Re-broadcasts are replays of previous recorded CLE programs, set on a specific date and time and where the original presenting speakers calls in live at the end of the event to answer questions. This “live” element allows for “live” Re-broadcast CLEs to qualify for “Live” CLE credits in most states. [The following states DO NOT allow for “live” CLE credits on re-broadcast CLEs: NV, OH, MS, IN, UT, PA, GA, SC, and LA]

Many states allow for credit to be granted on a 1:1 reciprocal basis for courses approved in another mandatory CLE jurisdiction state. This is known as a reciprocity provision and includes the following states: AK, AR, HI, CT, FL, ME, MO, MT, ND, NH, NM, VT, NJ, NY, and WV. myLawCLE does not seek direct accreditation of live webinars or teleconferences in these states.

Section I. First Amendment Review

Section II. Suits against religious organizations

Section III. #MeToo Movement

Section IV. How can religious organization protect themselves against litigation

Section V. How should lawyer guide religious organizations

Section VI. Constitutional principles

Section VII. Governance and administration