Continuing Legal Education

TELESEMINAR: Law of Religious Organizations, Part 1 – A National Perspective

April 22, 2014
12:00 – 1:00 p.m.
1.00 MCLE hours


There is often a tension between religious organizations – churches and church-affiliated groups, like child care centers and health clinics – and civil law. Unlike other nonprofit organizations, they have specifically faith-based missions that may run counter to the patterns of civil law – or have special exemptions from it. This includes tax and real estate law, health care law and principles of nonprofit governance, employment law and the First Amendment. The array of issues confronting these organizations can be bewildering. This program will provide you with a real-world guide to the law of religious organizations, including discussions of employment, health care, tax, First Amendment, governance and civil litigation issues. Part 1 of 2.


  • Framework of the law of religious organizations
  • Choice of entity for churches and church-related organizations
  • Tax exempt status – obtaining and maintaining it, fundraising and reporting to the IRS
  • Compensation of minsters, wage and hour issues, and health care benefits offered to church workers
  • Church hiring practices, federal law and the First Amendment


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Program Speakers:
L. Martin Nussbaum,
Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP, Colorado
James R. Walker, Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP, Colorado



L. Martin Nussbaum is a partner in Colorado Springs, Colorado office of Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP, where he is co-chair of the firm’s Religious Institutions Group.  He has an extensive national practice serving churches, denominations, ‎religious schools, and other ministries. He serves as general counsel ‎for many religious institutions and also serves as ‎litigation counsel and consulting counsel in trial and appellate courts nationwide.  He has served as a member of the Christian Legal Society’s Center for Law and Religious Freedom Case Selection Committee and as a consultant to the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. He is a member of the Christian Legal Society and Legatus, and maintains an archive of religious liberty resources at  Mr. Nussbaum received his B.A., summa cum laude, at the University of Notre Dame and his J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law.

James R. Walker is a partner in the Denver office of Lewis Roca Rothgerber LLP, where he is chair of the firm’s tax practice.  He has a broad practice including tax planning, taxpayer defense of federal and state tax positions, and all aspects of wealth transfer ‎planning.  He is a fellow of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel and the American College of Tax ‎Counsel.  He writes and speaks nationally on tax and estate planning matters.  Mr. Walker received his B.S. from Colorado State University, his J.D. from the University of Denver College of Law, and his LL.M. in taxation from New York University School of Law.