Religious Employers, The Ministerial Exception, And Pregnant Women

Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete, LLP

With Easter and Passover almost upon us, what better topic than a new case on the ministerial exception to Title VII?

A federal judge in Ohio has recently refused to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a former teacher at a Catholic school who alleged that she was let go because of her pregnancy. (The teacher was not married, and she alleged that she became pregnant through artificial insemination.)

At this very preliminary stage of the litigation, the judge had to accept as true everything that was alleged in the plaintiff's lawsuit. So it's possible that the ultimate outcome will be different, and we have not heard the employer's side of the story.

The case is interesting because it is one of the first "ministerial exception" cases (if not the first) to be decided since the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC, which I blogged about a while back. (Scroll down to "Hail, hail, Freedonia!")

Please see full article below for more information.

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