Erik W. Stanley
Erik has over twenty years of experience litigating religious liberties cases and advising religious institutions on a wide array of matters including employment, tax, zoning, and land use, corporate formation, bylaws and policies, litigation, and administrative and regulatory matters. Erik’s representation focuses on ensuring that ministries and churches have the legal space to minister freely. In today’s legal environment, churches and ministries need skilled legal counsel to navigate challenges that can negatively impact their ministries. Erik has a history of providing his clients solid legal representation together with a missional mindset that understands the ministry world.
A proven litigator, Erik also represents clients in commercial litigation and business matters.
Prior to joining Provident Law, Erik was Senior Counsel and the Director of the Center for Christian Ministries at Alliance Defending Freedom. In that role, Erik oversaw all litigation efforts and implemented strategic projects to maintain the autonomy of churches and ministries and to ensure their freedoms were protected under the First Amendment.
Erik has litigated cases involving churches and ministries across the United States and has argued numerous cases in both trial and appeals courts on the issues of religious liberty and church autonomy. Erik also represented clients before the United States Supreme Court in two merits cases where he sat as second chair, Trinity Lutheran Church v. Comer (2017) and McCreary County v. ACLU (2005).
Erik has appeared in numerous media sources commenting on religious liberties and church autonomy including Fox News Channel, MSNBC, CNN, Associated Press, Wall Street Journal, American Family Radio, USA Radio News, Coral Ridge Ministries, SRN News, CNS News, Christian Science Monitor, London Daily Mail, Family News in Focus, London BBC, U.S. News and World Report, Boston Globe, NPR, Salon, Citizen Magazine, CBS News, Moody Prime Time America, WorldNetDaily, Los Angeles Times, New York Times, USA Today, World Magazine, Washington Times, Legal Times, and numerous local print, radio and television sources.
Erik received his Master of Divinity summa cum laude from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary in 2013. He received his Juris Doctor in 1999 from Temple University School of Law, where he graduated cum laude in the top five percent of his class. Erik also attended Asbury College where he graduated magna cum laude in 1995 with a B.A. in History.