Stuart M. Gerson, Member of the Firm in the Litigation and Health Care & Life Sciences practices, in the firm’s Washington, DC, and New York offices, was quoted in Law360, in “Health & Life Sciences at the High Court: A Decade in Review,” by Jeff Overley and Kevin Stawicki. (Read the full version – subscription required).

Following is an excerpt:

ACA Ruling Was 'Defining Moment' for Roberts Court

The U.S. Supreme Court's preservation of the ACA in 2012 easily tops the decade's list of epic rulings, reverberating to this day across the legal, political and public health spectrums.

In National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, the high court left intact a nearly 1,000-page law that has spawned thousands more pages of regulations, generating abundant fodder for legal advice, lobbying and further litigation. …

"The case marked the defining moment of [the] Roberts court," Epstein Becker Green member Stuart Gerson told Law360. "When the chief justice joined the liberals to uphold the ACA, he set in place a tone of moderation."…

Hobby Lobby Fortifies Corporate Rights on Religion and Speech

In another ACA case with immense implications, the Supreme Court in 2014 allowed closely held for-profit companies to avoid covering birth control for employees by citing religious objections.

The high court's 5-4 ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby found that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act provides "very broad protection for religious liberty" not just for individuals, churches and faith-based groups but also for some corporations. …

Gerson compared the Hobby Lobby decision to conservative-led rulings in recent years — including the Citizens United ruling against campaign contribution limits — that have recognized broad free-speech rights for corporations and other entities.

Although the Hobby Lobby case technically didn't turn on the First Amendment, it is "nevertheless highly illustrative of the conservative majority's expansive view of freedom of speech as a counter to social-issue legislation," Gerson said.


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