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  • Supreme Court shoots down Biden administration COVID-19 vaccine rule: So what’s next? By Arslan Sheikh   On Jan. 13, 2022, the United States Supreme Court struck down the Biden administration’s vaccine-or-test requirement for employers with 100 or more employees. OSHA vaccine rule The decision pertained to a vaccine rule enacted in November 2021 by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). By way of background, OSHA is responsible for ensuring workplace safety by enforcing occupational safety and health standards. Typically, the development of OSHA standards must include time periods for the agency to provide notice and... More
  • Opponents of OSHA COVID-19 vaccination and testing rule appeal to Supreme Court By Porter Wright   As we recently reported, on Dec. 17, 2021, the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted the Fifth Circuit’s stay on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). Shortly after the Sixth Circuit’s decision was issued, several opponents of the ETS petitioned the Supreme Court to issue an emergency stay to block OSHA from enforcing the rule. The petitioners have asked the Supreme Court to put the appeal on a fast... More
  • OSHA COVID-19 vaccination and testing rule reinstated By Porter Wright   As we previously reported, on Nov. 12, 2021, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals blocked the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) and ordered OSHA to take no steps to implement or enforce the ETS. After that, several lawsuits challenging the ETS were consolidated in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, and OSHA filed a motion to dissolve the stay issued by the Fifth Circuit. On Dec. 17, 2021, the... More
  • Florida enacts law that limits employers’ ability to mandate vaccinations By Arslan Sheikh   Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis recently signed House Bill 1B into law, making it more difficult for employers in the state to mandate vaccinations for their employees. The law, which will remain in effect until June 1, 2023, states that an employer may not impose a COVID-19 vaccine requirement without providing five exemptions from the requirement. Those five exemptions are: An exemption based on medical reasons, including, but not limited to, pregnancy or anticipated pregnancy To claim this exemption, the employee... More
  • Federal contractor vaccine requirements blocked By Jourdan Day   On Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2021, a federal court in Georgia issued a nationwide injunction against Executive Order 14042, which required many federal contractors to mandate vaccination of employees at facilities which provide support for their federal work. As we have reported in recent weeks, attorneys general and other business groups have been filing lawsuits across the country to prevent vaccine mandates from going into effect. In the State of Georgia et al. v. Biden et al. case, the judge found... More
  • More courts issue injunctions against federal vaccine mandates By Mike Underwood   Federal vaccine mandate obligations continue to be challenged successfully in the courts. Here is a quick refresher on the federal measures taken recently to require employers to mandate COVID-19 vaccination. A season of federal vaccine mandates On Sept. 9, 2021, President Biden signed Executive Order 14042, which required many federal contractors to mandate vaccination of employees at facilities which provide support for their federal work. On Nov. 5, 2021, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued its long anticipated... More
  • OSHA calls off enforcement of vaccine requirement – for now By Jourdan Day   As we previously reported, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued its Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) on mandatory COVID-19 vaccines on Nov. 4, 2021. Since then, a number of lawsuits have been filed challenging OSHA’s ability to enforce this ETS. Following a stay of those lawsuits by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the cases will be consolidated, and the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals will rule on the fate of the ETS. Regardless of how the... More
  • EEOC revises guidance regarding religious accommodations for COVID-19 requirements By Arslan Sheikh   As employers across the country have begun to implement COVID-19 vaccination and testing requirements, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently updated its guidance regarding religious accommodations. As a reminder, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act states that an employee may be entitled to a reasonable accommodation from a workplace requirement if the employee has a sincerely-held religious belief, practice or observance that prevents the employee from adhering to the requirement. The employer need not provide an... More
  • Biden administration extends federal contractor vaccination deadline to Jan. 4 to align with OSHA and CMS deadlines By Porter Wright   The Biden administration recently announced the deadline for employees of federal contractors covered by Executive Order 14042 to be vaccinated for COVID-19 will be extended to Jan. 4, 2022. Previously, the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force set a deadline of Dec. 8, 2021, for federal contracts entered into or modified after Oct.15, 2021. As we previously reported, last week the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) released its COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS), which will require... More
  • OSHA issues emergency temporary standard: Mandates COVID-19 vaccination or testing for companies with over 100 employees company-wide By Mike Underwood and Porter Wright   The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has issued its Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) mandating certain COVID-19 safety protocols. The ETS answers some of the questions employers have had while waiting for the standard. KEY THINGS TO KNOW  What companies are covered under the emergency temporary standard? The ETS applies to companies that employ 100 or more people. Coverage is determined based on the number of employees company-wide, and not the number of employees at a... More