The Supreme Court recently struck down an Affordable Care Act mandate requiring all closely held for-profit businesses to pay insurance coverage for their employees’ contraception. The court ruled that this mandate violated the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993.
What does this mean for employers with sincere religious beliefs? Justice Ginsburg, in her dissent, made a very strong argument that this case would open a floodgate of litigation. She believes that this case will allow any commercial enterprise to opt out of any health-care related law they believe to be incompatible with their religious beliefs. Some examples include blood transfusions for Jehovah’s Witnesses, antidepressants for Scientologists, medication derived from pigs such as anesthesia for certain Muslims, Jews, and Hindus, and vaccinations for Christian Scientists.
Although it is too soon to tell, with this decision, closely-held commercial enterprises with sincere religious beliefs may be able to opt-out of certain types of government mandated healthcare coverage. For more information about this landmark decision and its implications, please contact an employment law attorney.
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