|States With No Corporate Income Tax Rate|
Service on Religious Grounds
business refuese to serve someone based on their deeply held
This question has been in the news lately because of
a bill signed into law by the Indiana Governor called the “Religious
Freedom Restoration Act”.
What is the Religious
Freedom Restoration Act and what rights does it give to
individuals and businesses?
This law exist at the
level as well as at the state level.
The federal government passed such a law in 1993.
Twenty(20) states have laws protecting religious
states have this right enshrined in their constitutinos or
as separate laws.
These laws basically
“Government shall not substantially burden a person's
exercise of religion even if the burden results from a rule
of general applicability, except as follows….
(1) is in furtherance of a compelling governmental
(2) is the least restrictive means of
furthering that compel-ling governmental interest.”
These laws also provides
for judicial relief in this way:
person whose religious exercise has
been burdened in violation of this section may assert
that violation as a claim or defense in a judicial
proceeding and obtain appropriate relief against a
does it mean for small businesses that do not want to
provide certain services that they determine to be
It means that businesses can refuse to provide
certain services based on deeply held religious beliefs
using these laws as a defense.
However, it does not stop someone from suing the
The business can go before the courts and use these laws as
a defense and in some cases if they win the case they are
permitted to be reimburse for all legal expenses.
However, refusing to provide a service can result in
harm to the business from boycut and negative publicity and
for this there is no legal recourse.
out the specifics of the law in your state use these
Public Law 103-141 (The Religious Freedom
Restoration Act of 1993)