State Law Activity: A report by the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive rights think tank, found that 26 states are certain or likely to ban abortion in the event Roe v. Wade is overturned. This includes 9 states with a pre-Roe ban that was never lifted and 13 states with a trigger ban that would take effect automatically should Roe be overturned.
The constitutional right to abortion has been eliminated. The Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade, undoing a federal standard that had legalized abortions since 1973. As a result, abortion will likely become illegal in half the country and many employers will be looking to revise their employee benefits in an effort to meet their employees’ health care needs. However, as discussed more fully below, the adoption of a new benefit can result in inadvertent compliance issues that need to be fully considered.
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Earlier this week, the COVID-19 testing coverage mandate was significantly expanded pursuant to FAQs issued jointly by the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services and the Treasury (collectively, the Departments). The newly expanded mandate is effective now - or more precisely, on January 15, 2022. Following is a discussion of what is required by group health plans (and health insurance issuers) and certain procedural issues with respect to the guidance.
UPDATED to reflect issuance of IRS Rev. Proc. 2021-45
Nearly two months after President Biden announced that a federal emergency temporary standard (“ETS”) regarding a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for private employers would be forthcoming, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) has finally issued relevant guidance. For example, OSHA published a fact sheet for the ETS on the agency’s website and announced that the final ETS will be published in the Federal Register on November 5, 2021. An unpublished copy of the ETS is available here.