See all our coverage of the 2012 Contraceptive Mandate here.
A federal judge today dismissed the lawsuit filed by seven states attorneys general seeking to block the birth control mandate, the requirement under health reform that all insurance policies provide contraception without a co-pay. The rule, which goes into effect for most plans in just a few weeks (August 1st, 2012), is intended to close the gap in access to contraception posed by high cost barriers, especially for low-income women, and women living in poverty.
According to Nebraska Central News (NCN):
U.S. District Court Judge Warren K. Urbom ruled Tuesday that the states had no standing in the lawsuit, because they had failed to prove they would suffer immediate harm once the rule is enacted.
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The policy mandates that insurers cover all contraceptive methods approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
Republican attorneys general from Florida, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Texas joined in the lawsuit, as did three Nebraska-based employers affiliated with the Catholic Church, a nun and a female missionary.
NCN reports Urborn found that the Catholic Church-affiliated groups failed to show that a religious exemption written into the rule wouldn’t apply to them.