06 March 2014

More on Bankruptcy and Churches

Two bankruptcy post in one day! (Go here if you missed my earlier one.)

Some time ago I posted a series of entries about the bankruptcy of the Crystal Cathedral, a Southern California mega-church. You can read the final post here and work your way back if you'd like. I've also commented on the work of Pamela Foohey who is the leading (if not the only) scholar of ecclesial (church) bankruptcies.

Go here to read Pamela's latest post for even more information about church bankruptcies, summed up in six observations gleaned from interviews with the attorneys who handled the cases. Not surprisingly, many discounted their fees when representing a church. It shouldn't have surprised me that confusion in church leadership (board or pastor?) was a recurring problem as well as the penchant of financially distressed churches to venture into other lines of business (e.g., child care) to raise money.Something I hadn't considered was a claim by secured lenders that church offerings constituted cash collateral. You'll need to read Pamela's post for the rest of the story.

All in all, an interesting six points that are valuable to attorneys representing churches in financial distress.

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