Case Conclusion Date: 07.11.2005
Practice Area: Constitutional
Outcome: The lower court was reversed. Plaintiffs won.
Description: Members of a religious institution sued to compel arbitration regarding a dispute within the religious corporation. The religious institution's By-Lawsprovided for arbitration pursuant to a relgiious court (Beit Din). The lower court dismissed the case stating that the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment precluded Court jurisdiction. The Plaintiff's appealed. On appeal, the primary issue centered around the Court's authority to require a religious organization to comply with its By-Laws, even if the mandatory alternative dispute mechanism has a religious componant. The Court ruled that requiring the religious institution to comply with its own by-laws was not an impermissible establishment of religion. Once the opposing parties were required to go to the Beit Din, the dispute was settled.