OSHA Withdraws its COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard

Bowditch & Dewey

On January 26, 2022, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) announced that it is withdrawing the emergency temporary standard that required employers with 100 or more employees to mandate COVID-19 vaccination or testing and masking rules (the “ETS”). This withdrawal is effective immediately. This comes on the heels of the United States Supreme Court’s January 13, 2022 decision that halted the ETS while legal challenges were to make their way through the lower courts.

While OSHA is withdrawing the ETS as an emergency temporary standard, the agency noted that it is not withdrawing it as a proposed rule via the normal (non-expedited) notice and comment process. OSHA emphasized that it “continues to strongly encourage the vaccination of workers against the continuing dangers posed by COVID-19 in the workplace.” OSHA announced that it will now prioritize its resources “to focus on finalizing a permanent COVID-19 Healthcare Standard.” Concurrent with OSHA’s withdrawal of the ETS, the federal government asked the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit to dismiss the various challenges to the ETS, as those challenges are now moot.


These employers no longer need to comply with the ETS’ requirements. Employers may continue to implement COVID-19 policies of their choosing, including measures requiring vaccination, testing, and/or masking, so long as these requirements are consistent with applicable law. In instituting these policies, employers will need to continue to be mindful of their obligation to provide employees with reasonable accommodations on the basis of disability and religion, pursuant to federal and state law.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Bowditch & Dewey | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Bowditch & Dewey

Bowditch & Dewey on:

Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide
- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.