Sunday, April 07, 2013

Court Denies TRO Against Contraceptive Coverage Mandate To Manufacturing Company

In MK Chambers Co. v. Department of Health and Human Services, (ED MI, April 3, 2013), a Michigan federal district court refused to issue an ex parte temporary restraining order to prevent enforcement of the Affordable Care Act contraceptive coverage mandate against a closely-held machinery components company and its two Catholic owners.  The court held that plaintiffs had not shown that they are likely to succeed either on their 1st Amendment or RFRA challenges.  As to RFRA, the court said:
Courts have held that the Mandate in question applies only to the corporate entity, not to its officers or owners, and that as to the individual owners, any burden imposed on them individually by the contraception mandate is remote and too attenuated to be considered substantial for purposes of the RFRA.... At this stage of the proceedings, without benefit of Defendants' response, Plaintiffs have not shown that Plaintiffs will prevail under the RFRA.