High Court Upholds Ministerial Exception In Job Bias Cases

Law360, San Diego (January 11, 2012, 5:17 PM EST) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that religious workers at churches are barred from bringing employment discrimination suits, overturning a lower court’s decision in favor of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

In a unanimous ruling, the high court recognized for the first time that employment discrimination laws contain a ministerial exception, a 40-year-old doctrine developed by the lower courts that blocks clergy members from filing employment suits against the religious organizations for which they work.

However, the court declined to draw a line distinguishing...
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