Legal Insights and Perspectives for the Healthcare Industry

In this LawFlash our Labor, Employment, and Benefits team details the long-anticipated ruling by the US Supreme Court in Bostock v. Clayton County that held Title VII’s ban on discrimination extends to gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals. The decision comes on the heels of a recent US Department of Health and Human Services announcement rolling back certain healthcare protections extended to LGBT individuals as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Noting that the Supreme Court’s ruling will have a sweeping impact on federal antidiscrimination law, the LawFlash discusses key recommendations for employers and policy implications for the ACA.

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We invite you to join us on Thursday, February 27 for our next installment of the Fast Break series. In a recent post, we highlighted staffing-related trends that arise in collective bargaining in the healthcare industry. For this month’s edition of Fast Break, we will be joined by partner Douglas Hart to discuss the recent National Labor Relations Board labor law changes and what healthcare providers should expect for 2020.

Register for the webinar now.

While US healthcare institutions are poised to respond to any outbreak of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV), how should they prepare as employers for the questions and compliance challenges that arise in a public health crisis? In this LawFlash, our Labor, Employment, and Benefits team cautions that “employers must carefully balance concerns relating to employee and public safety with protecting employees from unnecessary medical inquiries, harassment, and discrimination—all while complying with immigration, leave, and medical privacy laws.”  Recommending that “[r]esponsibility should be assigned to specific individuals or teams to assess the hazard, communicate with employees and the public, and implement appropriate security measures,” they detail important information that employers should know before responding to an outbreak situation.

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Check out our Responding to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus page for all of the latest developments.

Our global employment and immigration team details a number of recent developments with important implications for the US healthcare industry. These include a ruling by the US Supreme Court to lift the October 2019 injunction on the public charge rule, visa reciprocity changes for France and Australia, the potential expansion of the list of countries subject to the administration’s travel ban, and eligibility changes for E-1 treaty trader and E-2 treaty investor visas affecting Iranian nationals. Recent studies show that nearly one in four US healthcare industry workers are immigrants. To that end, healthcare industry employers should be aware of and consider how these changes may impact their workforce.

Read US Supreme Court Allows Public Charge Rule on Immigration to Move Forward >>

Read Travel Ban Countries List Likely to Expand; Visa Restrictions to Impact Nationals of Iran, France, Australia >>

The Morgan Lewis Labor & Employment NOW video series provides analysis of the latest legal developments and compliance insight for employers. In this edition, Doug Hart discusses staffing-related trends that arise in collective bargaining in the healthcare industry. Doug offers guidance to hospitals and healthcare facilities to better understand unions’ bargaining positions and determine appropriate employer responses, focusing on in-house registries, float pools, ratios, contract language, and wage and hour concerns.

Watch the discussion at Labor & Employment NOW >>

Healthcare is the largest labor market in the United States, employing over 18 million workers. Our labor, employment, and benefits team has compiled a list of hot topics and trends in employee benefits to watch in 2020. Key takeaways addressed in this important presentation include health and welfare preventative care services, fringe benefits, taxpayer identity theft, part-timers and 401k plans, and more.

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The US District Court for the District of Oregon on November 2 issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) to block the new health insurance requirement for immigrant visa applicants from taking effect on November 3, 2019. As discussed in an earlier alert, the White House issued a presidential proclamation that sought to deny admission to the United States of “immigrant” foreign nationals that will “financially burden the United States healthcare system.” The proclamation effectively deems aliens seeking to immigrate permanently to the United States inadmissible unless they will be covered by “approved” health insurance within 30 days of their entry into the United States or have the financial resources to pay for “reasonably foreseeable” medical costs.

Our global employment and immigration team recently issued alerts on decisions that affect the healthcare industry. The team discussed a new presidential proclamation that effectively makes foreign nationals inadmissible to the United States unless they have “approved” health insurance coverage, and noted that a trio of district courts have halted federal enforcement of the public charge rule. The team had previously summarized the public charge rule, which will not take effect so long as the district court lawsuits are pending.

Read New DHS ‘Public Charge’ Rule Could Have Employment-Based Implications >

Read USCIS to Implement New Public Charge Rule; White House Introduces Health Insurance Requirement for Immigrant Visa Applicants >

Read Federal Courts Halt New Public Charge Rule >

A final rule released by the US Department of Homeland Security will make it more difficult for foreign nationals who use public benefits to adjust or extend their immigration status in the United States based on their likelihood of becoming a “public charge” in the future. The rule also expands the list of programs that can lead to a public charge determination to those that provide healthcare and social services to vulnerable populations including Medicaid, SSI, SNAP, TANF, and federal housing benefits.

In this LawFlash, our US labor/management relations team tracks new developments at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) as 2019 progresses. These include three significant proposed changes affecting union election procedures that demonstrate just how fully the NLRB has embraced rulemaking for addressing significant areas of labor law. Also addressed are a number of highly consequential decisions affecting employers, including those in the healthcare industry.