The Lemon test (US law)

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The Lemon test is a legal precedent set by the 1971 Supreme Court case Lemon v. Kurtzman. The test "details the requirements for legislation concerning religion. It consists of three prongs":

  1. The government's action must have a legitimate secular purpose;
  2. The government's action must not have the primary effect of either advancing or inhibiting religion;
  3. The government's action must not result in an "excessive government entanglement" with religion.

If any of these 3 prongs is violated, the government's action is deemed unconstitutional under the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, violating the constitutional separation of church and state.