EU court backs German doctor fired by Catholic hospital

BERLIN (AP) — The European Union's top court says a German Catholic hospital may have unlawfully discriminated against a senior doctor dismissed because he divorced and then remarried in a civil ceremony.

The European Court of Justice was consulted by Germany's Federal Labor Court, which will deliver a final verdict. The plaintiff, identified as JQ, worked as head of internal medicine at a hospital managed by a company supervised by the archbishop of Cologne.

JQ argues his dismissal violated the principle of equal treatment because, under church labor regulations, a department head of Protestant or no faith wouldn't have been dismissed.

The EU court found Tuesday that adhering to the Catholic notion of marriage "does not appear to be a genuine requirement" of the job he did, though the German court must decide.