Press Release

Media Advisory: Oral Argument in Church Housing Allowance Case September 9

Media Contact

Ryan Colby 202-349-7219

Additional Information

Washington, D.C. On September 9, 2014, the Seventh Circuit will hear oral argument in the closely-watched case Freedom From Religion Foundation v. Lew, involving a 60-year-old tax provision that allows churches to provide ministers with tax-exempt housing allowances in lieu of housing them on church property. This “parsonage allowance” has come under attack by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, an atheist organization, which sued the IRS for implementing the provision. In a surprise ruling in November 2013, the 60-year-old housing allowance was struck down as unconstitutional in and is now on appeal to the Seventh Circuit.

United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

Oral Argument in Freedom From Religion Foundation v. Lew

September 9, 2014, at 9:30 a.m.

Main Courtroom, Room 2721
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
219 South Dearborn St.
Chicago, IL  60604

Becket attorneys will be available for comment immediately following the argument. The Becket’s brief in the case is available here. For more information or to arrange an interview with an attorney, please contact Melinda Skea at or 202.349.7224.

Becket is a non-profit, public-interest law firm dedicated to protecting the free expression of all religious traditions. For over 20 years, it has defended clients of all faiths, includingBuddhists, Christians, Jews, Hindus, Muslims, Native Americans, Sikhs, and Zoroastrians. Its recent cases include two major Supreme Court victories: the landmark ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, and the 9-0 ruling in Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC, which The Wall Street Journal called one of “the most important religious liberty cases in a half century.”