3rd Circuit creates split on health care law contraceptive mandate

A corporation is separate from its owners, the court reasoned

Though the tides were looking employer-friendly when Hobby Lobby got the 10th Circuit to rule that companies have religious rights, the 3rd Circuit on Thursday signaled that the battle over the contraceptive mandate is far from over.

The 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act includes a provision that requires employers to provide insurance coverage to their employees for contraceptives. Several companies with religious owners have taken umbrage at that, some of them taking their umbrage all the way to the courts. The 3rd Circuit case was brought by Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp., a Mennonite Christian-owned cabinet maker which argued, much like Hobby Lobby did in the 10th Circuit, that the mandate violates the owners' beliefs.

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