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Former Teacher Sues School for Breach of Contract

Court rules that teacher may sue former employer.

Key Point. In some states, a religious organization's decision to dismiss an employee may be subject to civil court review if the employee performed no "ministerial functions."
Key Point. Employee handbooks can limit an employer's legal right to dismiss "at will" an employee hired for an indefinite term.
Key Point. Federal age discrimination law prohibits discrimination in employment decisions on the basis of the age of an applicant or employee who is 40 years of age or older. This law applies to some religious organizations.

A federal appeals court ruled that a church school could be sued on the basis of breach of contract by a teacher who was dismissed. The facts of the case are simple. A second grade teacher was informed, after 23 years of teaching at a parochial school, that her school was being closed and that she was not going to be offered a teaching position in ...

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  • March 3, 1997