Northern NJ Chapter of the AGO
Sample Contract



The following is a sample contract for use by church musicians.  It should be considered as a guide to be adapted to each situation.  It includes items of importance to both parties, and helps eliminate the possibility of future misunderstandings.






Effective on (DATE), and until the termination of this agreement as hereinafter provided, (NAME) shall act as (TITLE OF POSITION), at (NAME OF CHURCH) at a salary of  $(AMOUNT)  per year payable _______________.  This salary shall be reviewed annually at the time of the preparation of the church budget.


The above named person shall:


1.  Provide organ music and direct the choir(s) at the ______ service(s) regularly scheduled on

     Sunday morning/Saturday afternoon) and shall select appropriate organ and choral music for

     each service.  Also, select hymns and service music in consultation with the minister/pastor.


2.  Provide organ and choral music for the following additional services during the year:



3.  Be responsible for the leadership of the following choirs:



4.  Rehearse once weekly (or as otherwise specified) with each of the choirs.

     During the summer months, the choir schedule shall be:   ______________________.


5.  Cooperate with the pastor and/or music/worship/liturgy committee in the area of general

     planning and leadership of the music program.  The person shall be directly responsible to:



6.  Be responsible for the purchase of all necessary music and music supplies and the hiring of

     all instrumental and vocal soloists.  Expenditures in this area shall not exceed the amount

     provided in the church budget.  The budget in the coming year for these expenses is:



7.  Be permitted to use the church facilities (organ, piano) for private teaching.  Times of lessons

     and use of facilities must be scheduled in advance through the church office so as not to

     conflict with other church program needs.

 8.  Provide music at all weddings requiring organ music held within the church.  The services of

       other organists may be used only with the permission of the regular organist.  In such cases,

       the regular organist shall receive his/her normal wedding fee.  For a short program of organ

       music preceding the wedding ceremony and for performing at the wedding ceremony, the fee

       shall be $(AMOUNT).  For attendance at the wedding rehearsal, an additional fee shall be

       $(AMOUNT).  Additional fees shall apply for special music of if attendance at extra rehearsals

        is required.

Provide music for funeral services held within the church, if available 
        at the time of the funeral.  The fee for such a service shall be $(amount).
If unavailable, the organist shall assist in securing the services of a substitute organist.


10.    Report to the appropriate committee the condition and needs for the

maintenance of the church organ(s) and piano(s).  The church shall

provide funds for the proper care of these instruments.


11.    Be responsible for setting policies regarding the use of the church’s musical



12.    Give notice of termination of employment at least sixty(60) days in advance

of the termination.




13.    Provide a vacation (with full salary) of ____ weeks annually.  (The musician

will assist the church in obtaining a substitute.)  The church shall pay for the services of a substitute organist and/or director.


14.    Grant up to ____ weeks (____weekly rehearsals/____services) sick leave

during the year.  In case of extended illness, the church should consider the granting of additional sick leave time.


15.    Provide the following essential benefits for the above-names person and

Their family:  Blue Cross/Blue Shield (or similar health plan), major medical insurance, Social Security, pension plan, disability and life insurance.

These benefits shall take into account the person’s needs and be commensurate with the benefits received by other employees of the church.


16.    Reimburse the above named person up to $(amount) annually, for

Expenses incurred by the person in attending a church music conference, workshop or institute, or other forms of continuing education.


17.    Give sixty (60) days advance notice if they wish to terminate employment.




________________________               ______________________________

Signature and Title of                               Signature of Church Musician

Church Representative






Website Builder