Judge Says Monks Can Fight for Right to Sell Caskets

April 17, 2011
Advertisement

imageNEW ORLEANS – Monks at St. Joseph Abbey near Covington, La., can sue for the right to sell handcrafted caskets without a license from the Louisiana Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors, a federal judge has decided.

U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval’s April 8 ruling sets the stage for a June 6 trial, during which the monks’ lawyers will argue that restricting casket sales to state-licensed funeral directors amounts to unconstitutional economic protectionism.

“This ruling is a vindication of what we have been saying all along: Economic liberty is for everyone, including the monks of the abbey,” Abbot Justin Brown said in a statement issued by the Virginia-based Institute of Justice, which is arguing on behalf of the abbey.

Advertisement

St. Joseph Abbey opened a woodshop in 2007 to sell handcrafted cypress caskets to the public; proceeds were intended to help pay the medical and educational needs of 36 Benedictine monks.

The board regulating state embalmers and funeral directors issued a cease-and-desist letter before a single casket was sold, citing a state statute that restricts casket sales to licensed dealers.

Last August, the 122-year-old abbey filed suit to strike down the law. Duval rejected a motion from the state funeral industry to dismiss the monks’ suit.

Michael Rasch, an attorney for the state Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors, could not be reached for comment, though he has said the board is only enforcing a state law.

Source

CDFuneralNews

CDFuneralNews

ConnectingDirectors.com is the leading online daily publication for funeral professionals with a reader base of over 45,000 of the most elite and forward-thinking professionals in the profession. With ConnectingDirectors.com we have created a global community through an online platform allowing funeral professionals to Stay Current. Stay Informed and Stay Elite.
CDFuneralNews
Advertisement

You may be interested

UPDATE ON HUGE FUNERAL INDUSTRY CIVIL LAWSUIT | FUNERAL nation 101 – CHANGE MAKERS
FUNERAL Nation
37 views
FUNERAL Nation
37 views

UPDATE ON HUGE FUNERAL INDUSTRY CIVIL LAWSUIT | FUNERAL nation 101 – CHANGE MAKERS

CDFuneralNews - January 21, 2018

On this episode, we talk with a death care attorney who is handling a high profile civil lawsuit affecting thousands…

OGR Annual Conference Offers Solutions to Business Problems in Savannah, GA April 4-6, 2018
Funeral Industry Press Releases
67 views
Funeral Industry Press Releases
67 views

OGR Annual Conference Offers Solutions to Business Problems in Savannah, GA April 4-6, 2018

CDFuneralNews - January 21, 2018

AUSTIN, TX – JANUARY 2018 - The International Order of the Golden Rule (OGR), the world’s leading professional association dedicated…

Funeral Cribs Episode 5 – Sunset Memorial Park, Alabama
News
447 views
News
447 views

Funeral Cribs Episode 5 – Sunset Memorial Park, Alabama

CDFuneralNews - January 18, 2018

The Sunset Memorial Park Funeral Home has had one major goal in mind from the time it started until now,…

Comments