Legal Resources

Americans United’s legal staff are experts in church-state and religious-freedom law. Learn more about important recent church-state decisions and key religious-freedom issues that we work on.

Americans United analyses of recent Supreme Court decisions

Fulton v. City of Philadelphia (2021): The Court issued a narrow decision exempting a religious, taxpayer-funded foster-care agency from a city nondiscrimination requirement that had barred the agency from turning away LGBTQ parents.

Our Lady of Guadalupe School v. Morrissey-Berru (2020): The Court expanded the ability of religious schools to lawfully discriminate against their employees using a legal doctrine known as the ministerial exception.

Trump v. Pennsylvania (2020): The Court upheld a broad religious exemption from regulations requiring employer and university health-insurance plans to cover contraceptives.

Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue (2020): The Court ruled that if a state decides to create a private-school voucher program, it must fund private religious schools along with private secular schools.

Bostock v. Clayton County (2020): After the Court’s ruling that federal civil-rights law prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, will religious extremists be able to weaponize religion to undermine LGBTQ rights?

Articles about important church-state issues by AU’s current and former legal staff

A Hollow History Test: Why Establishment Clause Cases Should Not Be Decided through Comparisons with Historical Practices, by Alex J. Luchenitser & Sarah R. Goetz, 68 Catholic University Law Review 653 (2019).

Symposium: Cross purposes — Why a Christian symbol can’t memorialize all war dead, by Richard B. Katskee, SCOTUSblog (Dec. 13, 2018).

“Religious Freedom” as a Tool to Oppress: The Explosion in Religion-Based Attacks on Civil Rights in Litigation, by Alex J. Luchenitser, 2016 Social Sciences 5, 52 (Sept. 2016).

Symposium: Religious freedom, not religious discrimination, by Richard B. Katskee, SCOTUSblog (Aug. 11, 2016).

A New Era of Inequality? Hobby Lobby and Religious Exemptions from Anti-Discrimination Laws, by Alex J. Luchenitser, 9 Harvard Law & Policy Review 63 (Winter 2015).

Hobby Lobby Symposium: Your God is bigger than my God, by Ayesha Khan, SCOTUSblog (June 30, 2014).

Beating Plowshares Into Swords, by Richard B. Katskee, Human Rights (Jan. 2013).

“InnerChange”: Conversion as the Price of Freedom and Comfort—A Cautionary Tale About the Pitfalls of Faith-Based Prison Units, by Alex J. Luchenitser, 6 Ave Maria Law Review 445 (Spring 2008).

Science, Intersubjective Validity, and Judicial Legitimacy, by Richard B. Katskee, 73 Brooklyn L. Rev. 857 (2008).

Why it Mattered to Dover that Intelligent Design Isn’t Science, by Richard B. Katskee, 4 First Amend. L. Rev. 112 (2006).

Paying for Praying: What’s Wrong with the Faith-Based Initiative, by Richard B. Katskee, Human Rights (Summer 2006).

Casting Aside the Constitution: The Trend Toward Government Funding of Religious Social Service Providers, by Alex J. Luchenitser, 35 Clearinghouse Review 615 (Jan.-Feb. 2002).

BREAKING NEWS

Americans United & the National Women’s Law Center file suit to challenge Missouri’s abortion bans.

Abortion bans violate the separation of church and state. Americans United and the National Women’s Law Center—the leading experts in religious freedom and gender justice—have joined forces with thirteen clergy from six faith traditions to challenge Missouri’s abortion bans as unconstitutionally imposing one narrow religious doctrine on everyone.


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