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Church-related School Required to Pay Benefits to Unemployed Principal

Pennsylvania court ruled that because school was separately incorporated from church, it was not exempt from paying unemployment benefits.

Key point. State laws exempt churches and some other religious organizations from coverage under unemployment laws, but such an exemption may not apply to church-created schools and other institutions that are separately incorporated.

A Pennsylvania court ruled that a church-related school was not an exempt employer under the state's unemployment law and therefore was required to pay benefits to an unemployed principal. A church school terminated an assistant principal (the "plaintiff"), and the plaintiff thereafter applied for unemployment benefits. A state agency acknowledged that the church had founded the school, but ruled that an exemption in the unemployment law for "a church or convention or association of churches or an organization that is operated primarily for religious purposes and that is operated, supervised, controlled or primarily supported by a church, or convention or association ...

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Posted:
  • August 21, 2013

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