Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Challenge To Contraceptive Coverage Mandate By Pittsburgh Diocese Dismissed On Ripeness and Standing Grounds

In Zubik v. Sebelius, (WD PA, Nov. 27, 2012), a Pennsylvania federal district court dismissed on ripeness and standing grounds a challenge by the the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, Catholic Charities of Pittsburgh and Catholic Cemeteries Association of Pittsburgh to the contraceptive coverage mandate issued under the Affordable Care Act. The court concluded that:
the safe harbor provisions of the regulation itself protects all of the Plaintiffs from any potential enforcement action until at least January 1, 2014.  Further, the health care plan offered by the Diocese, as well as three of the four health care plans offered by Catholic Cemeteries, share additional protection under the regulations insofar as they are each grandfathered under the ACA.... Defendants have committed to amending the preventive services coverage regulations well before January 2014 to accommodate the religious objections of organizations such as Plaintiffs.
Trib Total Media reports on the decision.

UPDATE: On Jan. 23, plaintiffs filed an appeal with the 3rd Circuit. (TribLive).

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