Employment of church workers - updated May 2013
Synopsis: There have been several recent cases on employment issues both in the domestic courts and in the European Court of Human Rights. This paper is intended as a convenient summary of recent case-law on clergy and lay employment. It will be updated as and when necessary. Last updated: 16/05/2013
Synopsis: This short guide to VAT updates and replaces CMC Circular No 1997/6 and the Addendum of April 2005. It is intended as a helpful summary of the VAT system as it affects the Churches – and no more than that. The notes are intended to be helpful guidance; however, they are neither approved nor endorsed by HMRC and therefore have no binding force. Decisions in individual cases depend on all the facts and circumstances and the rules relating to VAT can be extremely complex. Any church about to embark on a new venture which might engage VAT (such as building work) should seek professional advice at the outset.
Food hygiene and old jam-jars
Synopsis: This issue has hit the national press recently and we thought it might be helpful for members to be easily able to view our original article on this issue along with the latest update.
Chancel Repair Liability
Synopsis: A brief note on the issue of chancel repair liabilities.
Bill of human rights - second consultation
Synopsis: Members will be aware that the Commission on a Bill of Rights launched a second consultation on 11 July: the consultation ends on 30 September. Though this was probably not an issue on which it would have been appropriate for CLAS to respond collectively, the Secretary has replied to the consultation strictly in a personal capacity and largely in favour of maintaining the status quo.
An occasional events checklist
Synopsis: Churches sometimes organise occasional events: parish suppers, discos, concerts, church fetes and the like. The regulation of such events – whether by the local authority or by licensing bodies – is becoming more complex by the year; and this document is intended as a helpful checklist of things that organisers need bear in mind.
Vetting and Barring Scheme
Synopsis: The Vetting & Barring Scheme in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is currently under review by the Coalition Government. Pearl Luxon has written the attached helpful analysis of the present state of the Scheme.
The Churches and European Law
Synopsis: The position of ‘religion’ within the constitutional framework of the European Union has been a matter of discussion since at least the 1990s; and various European constitutional documents, such as the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and the Treaty of Lisbon make undifferentiated references to the religious inheritance of Europe. In addition, protection for ‘freedom of thought, conscience and religion’ is an important element of the European Convention on Human Rights. This paper attempts to sketch the history of the treatment of ‘religion’ in the various European constitutional documents and to pull together some of the material in them that provides for the protection of religion in European law.
Chubb Fire Limited contract
Synopsis: Fire appliance servicing and supply contract. For many years the churches have had a corporate agreement with Chubb Fire Limited to carry out the maintenance of fire appliances: it has recently been renegotiated and agreed for the next 3 years, expiring on 31 March 2012. Participating churches will benefit from up to 40% discount on the purchase price of new extinguishers and fixed discounts on other associated items.
Taxation of Ministers of religion: a rough guide
Synopsis: This Guide supersedes the previous CMC Circulars on the subject. It deals with the implications of income Tax and Capital Gains Tax for ministers of religion by virtue of their office, and does not in general deal with aspects which affect them in the same way as taxpayers at large. What follows is not about non-stipendiary ministers in secular employment. This text has no binding force. It is merely intended to be a very basic introduction to the complexities surrounding the particular tax position of stipendiary ministers. Decisions on individual claims depend upon all the facts and circumstances of the case. Any minister who has doubts about any particular aspect of his or her tax affairs should seek advice from HMRC or from a professional adviser. CLAS cannot in any circumstances advise on the tax affairs of individuals, nor does it accept any liability for any inaccuracy in the information that follows.
Charity Commission visits: report framework
Synopsis: A Charity Commission report is compiled on the basis of information provided to the Commission before, during and after a formal Review Visit to the charity in question. Because a Review Visit cannot cover every aspect of a charity’s operations, it is based around agreed objectives relating either to particular aspects of the Commission’s analysis of background information on the charity or to specific current projects or interests within the Commission.
Fire Safety: a guide for churches
Synopsis: This guide was published as a result of new Government Regulations that took effect on 1 October 2005. The Fire Safety Order replaced most fire legislation with one simple Order.