The Network for Public Health Law monitors key court cases and relevant judicial trends in public health. The Network’s monthly reporter, Judicial Trends in Public Health (JTPH), highlights select published cases in public health law and policy from the prior three months. These cases are organized below by name, issuing court, date of issuance, along with a brief synopsis, and include link to the case abstract and hyperlink to the full decisions (when publicly available). For more information, including a topic digest of these and other cases, see below. Questions, comments, thoughts? Contact the Network for more information.
Terkel, et al. v. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), et al. (U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas, February 25, 2021): A Texas federal court held that CDC lacked the constitutional authority to enforce a nationwide eviction moratorium. Read the abstract here.
Hayes v. Oregon (U.S. District Court, District of Oregon, February 3, 2021): After Hayes was denied entry to a farm store for refusing to wear a face covering, a federal court rejected his constitutional challenges to Oregon’s COVID-19 emergency declaration. Read the abstract here.
Machovec, et al. v. Palm Beach County (Florida District Court of Appeal, 4th District, January 27, 2021): A Florida appeals court denied a request to temporarily prevent enforcement of a county emergency order that mandates wearing “facial coverings” at businesses, public places, county and municipal government facilities, and while using public transportation. Read the abstract here.
Alliance for Children’s Rights v. Los Angeles Unified School District (Supreme Court of California, January 20, 2021): California’s Supreme Court refused to immediately force the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) to provide instruction and other services in person to students allegedly harmed most via distance learning. Read the abstract here.
Doe v. CVS Pharmacy (U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit, December 9, 2020): The 9th Circuit reinstated a previously dismissed Affordable Care Act (ACA) disability discrimination claim brought by individuals living with HIV/AIDS whose pharmacy benefits manager (CVS Caremark) required them to obtain specialty medications through its designated specialty pharmacy to be considered “in network.” Read the abstract here.
U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) v. West Meade Place LLP (U.S. Court of Appeals, 6th Circuit, February 8, 2021): The 6th Circuit ruled that a nursing home must face a suit brought by EEOC alleging that it unlawfully denied accommodation and fired a worker who suffers from anxiety. Read the abstract here.
Wartluft v. The Milton Hershey School and School Trust (U.S. Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit, February 1, 2021): The 3rd Circuit ruled that a free, private boarding school was not a licensed mental health or residential treatment facility and was thus not responsible for a student’s death by suicide. Read the abstract here.
In re University of Texas at San Antonio (Court of Appeals of Texas at San Antonio, January 20, 2021): The Texas Court of Appeals found that a trial court abused its discretion by compelling disclosure of a University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) employee’s medical records. Read the abstract here.
Ariix, LLC v. NutriSearch Corp. (U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit, January 22, 2021): Nutritional supplement maker Ariix LLC could pursue a false advertising suit against NutriSearch Corp., a guidebook publisher, over allegedly rigged ratings in favor of a competitor, ruled the 9th Circuit. Read the abstract here.
Association of Community Cancer Centers, et al. v. Azar II, et al. (U.S. District Court, District of Maryland, December 23, 2020): A federal court blocked the Trump administration’s recently issued “Most-Favored Nation Rule.” Read the abstract here.
JTPH is a collaboration of the Network’s Western and Eastern Region Offices. Western Region contributors include: Jennifer Piatt, JD, James G. Hodge, Jr., JD, LLM, and Claudia Reeves. Eastern Region contributors include Kathi Hoke, JD, Kerri McGowan Lowrey, JD, MPH, Mathew R. Swinburne, JD, Brooke Torton, JD, and Megan Griest, MPP.
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