Can I Run a For-Profit Business In Accordance with My Religious Values?

Written by Noel Sterett on April 2, 2021 Category: Business Formation and Organization, Business Law & Transactions, Small Businesses

The short answer is yes. There are thousands of for-profit businesses in the United States that are owned and operated by people with strong religious convictions and values. Many business owners actually owe their success to the religious values that drive them. Two of the biggest and perhaps most famous examples are Hobby Lobby and Chick-fil-A. The Green family, which owns Hobby Lobby, runs their crafts store chain in accordance with Christian values and with the goal of developing character in their employees and supporting their families. The Cathy family, which owns Chick-fil-A, can attribute much of the restaurant chain’s success to the company’s commitment to the Christian values of hospitality and service.

But as both Hobby Lobby and Chick-fil-A have found out, operating a for-profit business in accordance with religious values is not without its challenges. Business owners who seek to operate their businesses in accordance with their religious beliefs and values, need to pay especially close attention to the following:

  1. Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws.
  2. Workplace policies.
  3. Employment Policies.
  4. The public accommodation laws applicable to where the business is located.
  5. Whether their state has a Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

We will address each of these topics in more detail in a series of upcoming blog posts. At Dalton & Tomich, we have represented a wide variety of religious organizations all across the country. That experience helps us better serve businesses in both Michigan and Illinois that are owned and operated by people of faith who seek to run their businesses in accordance with their religious beliefs and values. If you need a business attorney with a wealth of experience working with people of faith, please give us a call.

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