In a case brought by Cyril and Jane Korte, Catholic owners of Korte & Luitjohan Contractors in Illinois, a three-judge panel granted a temporary injunction, ruling 2-1 that providing employees insurance coverage that includes birth control would violate the Kortes’ faith.
‘‘It is a family-run business, and they manage the company in accordance with their religious beliefs,’’ the judges wrote.
The dissenting judge argued that the company will not be paying directly for contraception but instead will purchase insurance that covers a wide range of health care that could include birth control, if the woman decides with her physician that she needs it.
‘‘What the Kortes wish to do is to preemptively declare that their company need not pay for insurance which covers particular types of medical care to which they object,’’ the dissenting judge wrote.
Similar reasoning was used by courts denying an injunction requested by the arts and crafts chain Hobby Lobby and religious book-seller Mardel Inc., which are owned by the same evangelical family. Oklahoma-based Hobby Lobby calls itself a ‘‘biblically founded business’’ and is closed on Sundays.
The U.S. district judge who first considered the request said, ‘‘Hobby Lobby and Mardel are not religious organizations.’’
‘‘Plaintiffs have not cited, and the court has not found, any case concluding that secular, for-profit corporations such as Hobby Lobby and Mardel have a constitutional right to the free exercise of religion,’’ the ruling said.