Dobbs Ruling and Health Plans

In the wake of SCOTUS’ ruling in the Dobbs case (i.e., the US Constitution does not provide for a right to abortion and therefore that states have the right to legislate abortion), many are wondering how this ruling may effect employer-sponsored health plans. Some takeaways:

  1. Will elective abortions be considered “essential health benefits” under plans governed by the ACA and therefore must be covered?
  2. Traveling to another state for an abortion could be covered under a health plan; however, many employers have stated that they will cover the cost regardless.

HI To Have Highest Minimum Wage

Hawaii Governor David Ige has signed House Bill 2510, which incrementally increases the minimum wage to $18.00 per hour come January 1, 2028, making the state the first state to require a $18 minimum wage.

The law phases in increases as follows: $12.00 per hour on October 1, 2022; $14.00 per hour on January 1, 2024; $16.00 per hour on January 1, 2026; and to $18.00 per hour on January 1, 2028.

Further, the tip credit increases from 75 cents per hour to $1.00 per hour on October 1, 2022; to $1.25 per hour on January 1, 2024; and to $1.50 per hour on January 1, 2028. Note that the tip credit is only available to the employer if the amount the employee receives from the employer and in tips is at least $7.00 more than minimum wage.

Model Policy for New Chicago Harassment Policy Released

The Chicago Commission on Human Relations has released an English-language model policy and a model sexual harassment prevention poster related to Chicago’s new requirement that employers adopt a sexual harassment prevention policy and provide annual training to employees and supervisors.

New Mexico Paid Sick Leave

The New Mexico Healthy Workplaces Act (“NMHWA”) requires all private employers to offer all employees 1 hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked. Employees may use up to 64 hours of earned sick leave in a defined 12-month period. Sick leave may also be used for absences due to family members’ illness or injury and reasons relating to domestic abuse and sexual assault. Employees are allowed to carry over any accrued, unused earned sick leave but the leave caps at 64 hours per 12-month period.

The NMHWA also allows a frontload method, i.e. no waiting period for accrual.

Employers are also required to provide notice to an employee regarding leave rights.

Written by: Gordon M. Berger, Partner 

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