Press Release

Appeals Court Grants Expedited Review of HHS Mandate DC Circuit Court to hear appeal on Belmont Abbey College and Wheaton College

Media Contact

Ryan Colby 202-349-7219

Additional Information

Washington, DC — This morning, the D.C. Circuit consolidated Belmont Abbey College v. Sebelius and Wheaton College v. Sebelius, and expedited their appeal against the HHS Mandate which forces the two religious schools to violate their deeply held religious beliefs of pay crippling fines.    Both the Belmont Abbey College and Wheaton College case had been dismissed at the trial court level, citing their cases were brought too early after the government granted a one-year “safe-harbor.”   This appeal will be the first time a federal Court of Appeals will consider the HHS mandate.

A hearing date will be set after November 13th, following the completion of briefing. The briefing schedule is as follows:

  • Becket’s Brief Due – October 5, 2012
  • Amicus Briefs Due – October 12, 2012
  • DOJ’s Brief Due – November 13, 2012

Becket led the charge against the unconstitutional HHS mandate, and currently represents: Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., Wheaton College, Belmont Abbey College, Colorado Christian University, the Eternal Word Television Network, and Ave Maria University. There are now 30 separate lawsuits challenging the HHS mandate.

Stay tuned for any developments at HHS Information Central.

Becket Law is a non-profit, public-interest law firm dedicated to protecting the free expression of all religious traditions—from Anglicans to Zoroastrians. For 18 years its attorneys are recognized as experts in the field of church-state law, and they recently won a 9-0 victory in Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC, which The Wall Street Journal called one of “the most important religious liberty cases in a half century.”   For more information, or to arrange an interview with one of the attorneys, please contact Melinda Skea at or call 202.349.7224.