Federal judge in Nebraska dismisses one lawsuit against HHS mandate
Published: July 18, 2012
LINCOLN, Neb. (CNS) -- A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit against the Department of Health and Human Services' mandated contraceptive coverage under the new health reform law July 17, saying it was "based on layers of conjecture." U.S. District Court Judge Warren K. Urbom ruled that the seven states and various other individuals and groups that filed suit in February against the mandate had failed to show that their health insurance plans would not be grandfathered -- and therefore not exempt from the requirement. Joining the attorneys general of Nebraska, South Carolina, Michigan, Texas, Florida, Ohio and Oklahoma in the lawsuit were a Catholic nun, a lay missionary working with the Fellowship of Catholic University Students, Pius X Catholic High School in Lincoln, Neb., and the Omaha-based Catholic Mutual Group, a self-insurance fund that covers more than 125 dioceses or archdioceses and 200 Catholic religious congregations in the U.S. and Canada. Spokesmen for several of the attorneys general said they were considering whether to appeal Urbom's ruling. The dismissal does not affect more than a dozen lawsuits brought in May by 43 dioceses and Catholic organizations nor another 10 suits brought by various Catholic and Protestant colleges, organizations or employers. The diocesan lawsuits have continued to add plaintiffs since their filing, with Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Chicago joining July 9 with the dioceses of Joliet and Springfield, Ill., and their Catholic Charities agencies and Wheaton College, an evangelical liberal arts college in Illinois, signing on July 18 to a lawsuit that includes the Archdiocese of Washington and The Catholic University of America.
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