News & Analysis as of

Government Requests Information on ACA Contraceptive Mandate

In a recent Supreme Court case, Zubik v. Burwell, the justices vacated and remanded six federal appellate judgements on whether an accommodation (described below) for employers that object to providing contraceptive coverage...more

July 2016: Appellate Update

The Effects of an Eight-Justice Supreme Court. Since Justice Scalia’s passing in February, the Supreme Court has operated with only eight justices, and it will continue to do so for as long as the Senate declines to consider...more

Supreme Court Returns Affordable Care Act Contraceptive-Coverage Cases to Lower Courts

The U.S. Supreme Court has unanimously remanded a consolidated appeal of seven cases addressing the contraceptive-coverage “accommodation” for religious organizations under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to the Courts of...more

Supreme Court Decides Not to Decide on Latest Challenge to ACA Contraceptive Coverage

The Supreme Court in a unanimous opinion remanded Zubick v. Burwell — and the six cases consolidated with Zubick — back to the Courts of Appeals to rule on the contraceptive opt-out notice provisions. The Court directed the...more

Surprising Result in Supreme Court Contraceptive Decision

The U.S. Supreme Court issued an unusual decision in the latest legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to reach the high court. In Zubik v. Burwell, the Court consolidated appeals filed by religious nonprofit...more

The Supreme Court - May 2016 #2

The Supreme Court of the United States issued decisions in six cases today: Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, No. 13-1339: The Fair Credit Reporting Act of 1970 (“FCRA”) imposes a number of requirements regarding the creation and...more

High Court Sidesteps Contraceptive Coverage Decision – For Now

The Supreme Court declined to rule on whether religiously affiliated nonprofits can be required to affirmatively “opt out” of providing contraceptive coverage to their employees, which would have triggered separate...more

Supreme Court Decides Zubik v. Burwell and consolidated cases

Zubik v. Burwell and several consolidated cases challenged a federal regulation requiring employers to cover certain contraceptives as part of their health plans unless they submit a form either to their insurer or to the...more

Why Can’t We Be Friends? The Supreme Court Discovers an Unexpected Meeting of the Minds in Zubik v. Burwell

Regardless of one’s preferred metaphor, the Supreme Court of the United States is adept at ducking, punting, and otherwise avoiding messy and socially divisive interpretive issues. Every once in a while, the parties even help...more

Complicit in Sin: the Burden of the Opt-Out Form

Does filling out a form burden religious beliefs? We’re about to find out. On November 6, the Supreme Court agreed to review a group of seven cases (led by No. 14-1418, Zubik v. Burwell) brought by religious non-profit...more

Supreme Court Update: Mullenix V. Luna (14-1143) And Order List

Was it Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr or Jon Bon Jovi who remarked, "The more things change, the more they stay the same"? (They both did!) Over the last few terms, we've encountered a few steady themes in the Supreme Court's...more

Supreme Court to Review Birth Control Mandates Under Affordable Care Act Once More

For the third time in four years, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear a challenge to a portion of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), President Obama’s signature health reform law passed in 2010. On November 6, 2015, the Supreme...more

Religious Institutions: September 2015

Respondeat superior (literally, "let the master answer" in Latin) is a doctrine that applies when an employer or principal has the ability and authority to direct and control the pertinent acts of the employee. Put otherwise,...more

Illinois Federal Court Dismisses Some, But Not All, RLUIPA Claims

A federal court in Illinois, in Church of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ v. City of Markham, Illinois (N.D. Ill. 2015), dismissed some of the Church’s religious land use claims while allowing others to proceed. The case is...more

Religious Institutions: August 2015

The decision by the United States Supreme Court on same-sex marriage has been greeted with praise and disdain by different corners of the country. The faith-based community has been especially outspoken. This is not...more

New Developments in Protections for LGBT Workers

It’s been a busy few weeks for developments in the area of LGBT rights since the Supreme Court’s decision in King v. Burwell , 576 U.S. ___ (2015)....more

The Contraception Coverage Controversy Continues…

As we have been discussing, the Affordable Care Act (“ACA”) requires all health plans to cover preventive health services for women, including all Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”)-approved contraceptives, at no cost (i.e....more

Hobby Lobby Redux

The regulations set forth two possible approaches to defining a “qualifying closely held for-profit entity” In Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc., 134 S. Ct. 2751 (2014) the Supreme Court held that the requirement to...more

Government Agencies Release Further Accommodations to Organizations Opposing Mandated Contraceptive Coverage

In response to the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, Inc., the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Labor (DOL) published proposed rules on August 22, 2014, expanding the...more

A Review of the Supreme Court’s 2013-2014 Term

The United States Supreme Court concluded its 2013-2014 term by issuing decisions in several highly publicized employment and employee benefits cases during the Court’s final scheduled sessions, including Noel Canning,...more

Health Care Update - July 2014 #3

In This Issue: - First Guidance following Hobby Lobby released - Implementation of the Affordable Care Act - Other Federal Regulatory Initiatives - Other Congressional and State...more

Hobby Lobby: Just a Start

As a trial lawyer, I rarely pay much attention to dissenting opinions. They do not serve as meaningful precedent, and they tend only to express the loser’s frustrated perspective. But Justice Ginsburg’s dissent in the Supreme...more

Four Myths of the Hobby Lobby Decision: Separating Fact from Fiction

Unless you have been living on another planet the past few weeks, you have probably heard that the United States Supreme Court rendered a decision in a case involving the arts and crafts store Hobby Lobby pertaining to...more

The ERISA Litigation Newsletter - July 2014

Editor's Overview - The end of the U.S. Supreme Court's term brought two significant ERISA decisions. The first concerns the standard of review that courts apply when evaluating ERISA stock-drop claims. As discussed...more

Religious Institutions Update

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. that an existing contraceptive coverage mandate violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act statute that applies to for-profit closely held corporations...more

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