Justia U.S. 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in Non-Profit Corporations

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Appellees in these consolidated appeals challenged under the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) the requirement under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) that contraceptive coverage be provided to their plan participants and beneficiaries. Appellees included a nonprofit institution of higher learning established by the Reformed Presbyterian Church and certain Catholic Dioceses and nonprofit organizations affiliated with the Catholic Church. Because they provided coverage to the Catholic nonprofits, the Dioceses, which were otherwise exempt, were required to comply with the contraceptive coverage requirement as to the nonprofits. The nonprofit appellees were eligible for an accommodation to the contraceptive coverage requirement, under which the contraceptive services will be independently provided by an insurance issuer or third-party administrator once the appellees advise that they will not pay for those services. Appellees argued that the accommodation places a substantial burden on their religious exercise because it forces them to facilitate the provision of insurance coverage for contraceptive services and has the impermissible effect of dividing the Catholic Church. The district courts granted Appellees’ motions for a preliminary injunction. The Third Circuit reversed, concluding that the accommodation places no substantial burden on Appellees, and therefore, Appellees did not show a likelihood of success on the merits of their RFRA claim. View "Geneva College v. Sec’y U.S. Dep’t of Health & Human Servs." on Justia Law

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Decedent was treated at a non-profit clinic, by volunteer physicians. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services deemed those physicians to be Public Health Service employees (Public Health Service Act, 42 U.S.C. 233(o)), immune from suit under the Federal Tort Claims Act, 28 U.S.C. 1346, 2671-2680. A suit against the U.S. was the exclusive remedy for alleged malpractice at the clinic. Decedent also treated at a facility where physicians did not enjoy those protections. Her estate sued the U.S., the clinic, the other facility, the doctors at that facility, and their physicians' group. The district court granted summary judgment for the clinic, predicated on immunity under the New Jersey Charitable Immunity Act (NJCIA), and ultimately dismissed. The Third Circuit affirmed, except for remanding with respect to the physicians' group. The trial court properly held that the U.S. was immune from suit under the NJCIA, which provides that a similarly-placed private employer would be entitled to the defense. The court properly held that the treatment provided constituted emergency medicine, so that N.J. Stat. 2A:53A-41 applied and one of plaintiff's experts was not qualified to testify. The court erred in not considering treatment by a physicians' assistant in considering claims against her employer, the physicians' group. View "Lomando v. United States" on Justia Law