Becket Fund’s HHS Mandate Challenge

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty led the charge to legally challenge the Administration’s mandate. Visit Becket Fund’s HHS Information Central with all cases, maps, timeline, and resources The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty led the charge to legally challenge the Administration’s HHS mandate.

This controversial rule requires religious institutions, in violation of their deeply held religious beliefs, to pay for drugs and services contrary to their teachings, or pay a severe fine. The mandate was issued in August 2011, and the Becket Fund quickly raised the alarm by suing on behalf of both Belmont Abbey College, a Catholic liberal arts college founded by Benedictine monks, and Colorado Christian University, an evangelical college located outside of Denver. After those lawsuits were filed, and after over 100,000 complaints were issued, the administration had a golden opportunity to expand the religious exemption.  However, on January 20, 2012, the administration merely gave such institutions an extra year to comply.

The Becket Fund moves forward with this crucial litigation. On February 9, 2012, the Becket Fund filed on behalf of the Eternal Word Television Network (EWTN), a Catholic news organizations founded 30 years ago by a cloistered nun named Mother Angelica.

On February 21, 2012, the Becket Fund filed on behalf of the Ave Maria University, a school dedicated to living the teachings of the Catholic church.

On March 22, 2012, the state of Alabama joined the Becket Fund’s lawsuit on behalf of EWTN, defending their citizens’ rights from offer products against their religious beliefs.

On June 28, 2012, the Supreme Court upheld the individual mandate challenge to the Affordable Care Act, but allowed the HHS mandate legal challenges to proceed.

On July 18, 2012, Wheaton College, the leading evangelical liberal arts institution, filed a lawsuit in partnership with Catholic University of America, marking the first-ever partnership between Catholic and evangelical institutions to oppose the same regulation in the same court.

On September 12, 2012, Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.,  a privately held retail chain with more than 500 arts and crafts stores in 41 states, filed a lawsuit in the US District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma, opposing the Health and Human Services “preventive services” mandate, which forces the Christian-owned-and-operated business to provide, without co-pay, the “morning after pill” and “week after pill” in their health insurance plan, or faces to the IRS.

On October 9, 2012, East Texas Baptist University and Houston Baptist University, filed suit, echoing plea of first Baptist leader, Roger Williams, Universities demand religious freedom.

On September 24, 2013, the Little Sisters of the Poor, a Roman Catholic congregation of nuns who cannot comply with the government’s mandate, filed the first class-action lawsuit to uphold their rights to carry out their vows of obedience in their service to the elderly poor.

On October 11, 2013, three religious ministry groups — Reaching Souls International, Truett-McConnell College, and Guidestone Financial Resources — that do not qualify for the “religious employer” exemption filed a class-action lawsuit defending their right to carry out their Christian mission.

Stay tuned here for up-to-date coverage of these lawsuits.

For more information, or to arrange an interview with one of the attorneys, please contact Emily Hardman, Communications Director, at or call 202.349.7224.

  • Media Essentials
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Becket Fund Cases Challenging the HHS Mandate:

Additional Resources:

Additional Opposition to the Mandate:

Other Resources:

See HHS Information Central for all press releases.

See HHS Information Central for all legal docs and news.






















C-SPAN: Becket Fund Statement




C-SPAN Washington Journal, July 2014



MSNBC: The Daily Rundown with Chuck Taylor, June 2014




Lori on MSNBC Hardball with Chris Matthews, March 25, 2014
















Mark on MSNBC, March 25, 2014
















Mark on FOX The Kelly File, March 25, 2014
















Montserrat Alvarado on Despierta América (November 2013)
Lori on WSJ

















Kyle Duncan on FOX News with Greta Van Susteren (April 2013)
Kyle on CNN 02-04-13

















The Hobby Lobby Story (Short Version)




The Hobby Lobby Story (Full Version)




Kyle Duncan on CNN (February 2013)
Kyle on CNN 02-04-13
















Kyle Duncan on CNN (November 2012)








Video: Meet the Little Sisters of the Poor
Mark with Cavuto on FOX 9.27

Fox News The Kelly File, February 26, 2014
Mark with Cavuto on FOX 9.27








Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, January 3, 2014
Mark with Cavuto on FOX 9.27








Video: Fox News “The Kelly File,” January 3, 2014
Mark with Cavuto on FOX 9.27








Video: Fox News “On the Record with Greta Van Susteren,” January 2, 2014
Mark with Cavuto on FOX 9.27









Luke Goodrich on Diane Sawyer’s ABC World News.  Click here for video.

Mark Rienzi on Geraldo at Large.  Click here for video.

Hannah Smith on American’s News HQ.  Click here for video.

Luke Goodrich on CNN Newsroom. Click here for video.

Hannah Smith on America’s Newsroom.  Click here for video.


Emily Hardman on MSNBC.  Click here for video.

Montse Alvarado on John Stossel.  Click here for video.