Chapter

The Legal Position of Religious Organizations

Norman Doe

in Law and Religion in Europe

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199604005
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729331 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199604005.003.0005
The Legal Position of Religious Organizations

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This chapter explores religious freedom in the context of both the general freedom of association and the specific right in some States of religious association. It then examines the legal categories of religious organization across the States of Europe, particularly those with legal personality — the terminology employed for their designation, their recognition, their regulation, and their public and private law status. It considers the conferral of legal personality on religious organizations by means of, variously, the enactment of legislation, the conclusion of covenants, and the registration of religious organizations. The chapter ends with a section on the exercise of legal personality, and the benefits which this brings. National laws on the legal position of religious organizations necessitate a high degree of cooperation between States and religion in this field but this area of law raises serious questions about equality of treatment between different religious traditions.

Keywords: religious organizations; legal position; legal personality; religious association; public law status; private law status; equality of treatment

Chapter.  15048 words. 

Subjects: EU Law

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