East Texas Baptist Univ. v. Burwell, No. 14-20112 (5th Cir. 2015)Annotate this Case
Plaintiffs, religious organizations, filed suit under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), 42 U.S.C. 2000bb to 2000bb-4, challenging a requirement that they either offer their employees health insurance that covers certain contraceptive services or submit a form or notification declaring their religious opposition to that coverage. The district court enjoined the government from enforcing the requirement. The court concluded that the acts plaintiffs are required to perform do not involve providing or facilitating access to contraceptives, and plaintiffs have no right under RFRA to challenge the independent conduct of third parties. Because plaintiffs have not shown that the regulations substantially burden their religious exercise or, in University of Dallas, have not demonstrated a substantial likelihood of doing so, the court need not reach the strict-scrutiny prong or the other requirements for an injunction. Accordingly, the court reversed the judgment of the district court.