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February 2007

New Publication on ERISA Implications for State Coverage Strategies

A new issue brief providing an update on the Federal Court of Appeals ruling is now available. In January 2007, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court’s July 2006 decision that ERISA preempts Maryland’s “Fair Share Act,” which required large employers to spend up to 8 percent of their payroll on employee health benefits or pay the difference to fund the state’s Medicaid program. The paper discusses in detail:

  • The majority opinion and the dissenting opinion
  • An analysis of the court’s opinion
  • How the decision could affect state health care access options

The publication, written by Patricia Butler, JD, DrPH, is part of a continuing series of policy papers on ERISA published by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's State Coverage Initiatives program and the National Academy for State Health Policy.