Can I sue a church?

UPDATED: Jan 9, 2014

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Can I sue a church?

My church agreed to build a park on their property in memory of my 2 1/2 year old son who passed away. The park was to be built with fundraising dollars from fundraising events that we put on. My family and I were the driving force behind this; no funds from church offerings were used at any time. The leaders in the church had taken away all say and control from us and told us that they were going to “restructure” it, which meant they didn’t want us in it anymore. We have raised closed to $15,000 of about $5,000 was used to buy materials for a picnic pavilion, which was erected by volunteers and my family. Which leaves around $10,000, my family also bought a tunnel and slide system which cost about $2500.

Asked on January 9, 2014 under Personal Injury, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can sue a church: they do not have immunity from lawsuits. You may also be able to sue church leaders, depending on the exact circumstances. From what you write, you would seem to potentially have a lawsuit based on breach of contract, or the church not doing what they agreed to do. Even if there was nothing in writing, an oral or verbal contract is legally enforceable--though obviously, it can be more difficult to prove the terms of the agreement without anything in writing. You should speak with an attorney about the situation in detail.

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