OSHA Vax-or-Test Rule Reinstated

Eric Paltell
Eric Paltell
12/18/2021

Late yesterday, United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit dissolved a nationwide injunction against OSHA’s emergency rule requiring  employers with at least 100 workers to mandate that their employees get vaccinated against Covid-19 or get tested regularly. This morning, the United States Department of Labor announced that employers have until January 10, 2022 to come into compliance with the rule, although it agreed to defer enforcing penalties against employers until February 9, 2022 so long as employers  are “exercising reasonable, good faith efforts to come into compliance with the standard.”

Immediately after the Sixth Circuit announced its decision Friday, opponents of the rule petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court to block the OSHA rule.  It remains to be seen if the Supreme Court will grant the petition for review. 

As my colleague Randi Hyatt explained in this blog post, OSHA’s emergency rule requires companies to develop a vaccine policy, determine employee vaccination status, and provide leave for worker vaccination or recovery.  Given the continued uncertainty about the enforceability of the  rule, as well as a DOL compliance deadline that is a little more than three weeks away, we recommend that all employers with 100 or more employees continue to take steps to  follow the rule’s mandates as quickly as possible. 

 

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