Signing your life away: Scientology staff contracts, releases and agreements

Being recruited to join staff is a process endured by most (if not all) Scientologists at one point in their lives and for those who choose to make the jump, this is what awaits: dozens of pages of waivers, agreements and legal documents to sign. As a Scientologist, you believe that Scientology is the most effective way of helping mankind – and the only answer to life’s problems. Therefore the pressure placed on parishioners is intense: ‘if you believe Scientology helps people, why wouldn’t you want to join staff?’

As part of the recruitment process, you are required to fill out your ‘Life History’ – a lengthy form asking hundreds of personal questions ranging from your parents’ employers and home addresses, through to listing past (and present) sexual partners. This allows the Church to gather dirt on its members and assess whether the person presents a risk to it’s (obviously fantastic) PR image.

Following this, you are presented with your staff contract – which in actual fact comprises of multiple separate contracts, covering everything from sick leave and holiday pay to religious declarations and agreeing to uphold a high ethical standard of living.

For context, Scientology employees are comprised of two divisions: the Sea Organization, where members sign a one billion-year pledge to work for the Church 7 days a week, and Class V staff who agree to a 2.5 or 5 year commitment and work full time for the Church on their ‘Day’ or ‘Foundation’ shift pattern.

Sea Org members are provided food and accommodation and a weekly stipend of $50 in return for their dedication to the Church, whereas Class V staff are expected to pay their own way usually in the form of a moonlight – a second job that can pay the bills.

US attorney and Youtuber Zac Morgan and I sat down today in the first of a multi-part series dissecting these staff contracts and it was fascinating to hear his thoughts on the legality of these staff contracts. You can watch the first episode below:

Scientology Staff Contract PDFs

For those of you interested in reviewing the documents in full, they are freely available online and have been collated below for you to examine at your pleasure. Although Scientology operate through a variety of legal entities across the globe, these contracts are generally unaltered from Org to Org – whether you are joining staff in London, Milan or New York.

These agreements comprise what is referred to as the ‘staff contract’, and for Sea Org members are accompanied by a one-billion year ‘spiritual commitment’, which is widely regarded as non-enforceable as a legal contract. However, the documents below have been tested in courts and for the most part are considered legal contracts.

General Release

Religious Services Enrolment Application, Agreement & General Release

Agreement & Release Regarding Spiritual Assistance

Agreement Regarding Confidential Religious Files

Orientation Film Attestation


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Alexander Barnes-Ross

Scientology Business provides analysis and commentary on the Church of Scientology's corporate structure, business operations and functions in the United Kingdom and Europe. The website looks at Scientology's shell companies, financial records and maps the web of international corporate entities responsible for their UK and European activities.

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