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Federal Court Blocks OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS

Federal Court Blocks OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS

November 9, 2021

On Saturday, November 6, 2021, the fifth Circuit of Appeals ordered a temporary stay on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) on mandatory COVID-19 vaccination and testing for the workplace. The order effectively prevents enforcement of this ETS until a final decision regarding the legality of this standard is published.

Temporary Stay

The stay was ordered in one of multiple lawsuits challenging the validity of OSHA’s COVID-19 ETS. These lawsuits request a permanent injunction against the ETS. The Court justified the order because it found “cause to believe there are grave statutory and constitutional issues” with the OSHA vaccination mandate.

The Court has ordered OSHA to respond to the request for permanent injunction by 5 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 8, 2021. Parties petitioning the injunction will have until 5 p.m. on Tuesday, 2021, to reply.

Impact on Employers

While the temporary stay effectively prevents enforcement of the ETS until a final decision on the legality of the standard is published, the law has not been permanently delayed or vacated officially. Therefore, the future of the ETS remains uncertain due to these pending legal challenges. While the final result is unknown, it will take weeks of planning for employers to comply with the ETS’s deadlines. Accordingly, employers may want to continue in their efforts to understand and prepare for compliance with the ETS as if it is going to take effect while litigation continues. Affected employers should also monitor development of this legal challenge to learn more about the viability of, and their compliance obligations with, the ETS.

Stay tuned as this issue continues to rapidly develop and we will keep you updated on any new developments. For a copy of this news brief, click here: Federal Court Blocks OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS .

Reach out to Mike Young today for more content on this ETS mandate and the workplace and to discuss how further updates can affect your business at 714.716.4060 or mike@my-ebp.com .