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More Circuits Added to the OSHA ETS Lottery

Lawsuits challenging the COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing (the “ETS”) issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) were filed in three additional U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals on Wednesday, November 10, 2021. Labor unions filed lawsuits in the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second, Fourth, and Ninth Circuits. As a result, there are now ETS-related lawsuits pending in the First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Eleventh, and D.C. Circuit Courts.

According to federal rules, the legal challenges to the OSHA ETS will be consolidated and heard by a single U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation will conduct a lottery, expected on November 16, to select which U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will hear the consolidated litigation. The court to hear the litigation will be drawn “from a drum containing an entry for each circuit wherein a constituent petition for review is pending.” Each court only gets one entry, despite the number of petitions pending before each court. Until the Judicial Panel selects the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to hear the litigation via the lottery, all the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals can proceed with rulings, as the Fifth Circuit did this past weekend.

The labor unions’ move may be a move reflective of an intent by some to increase the odds that the OSHA ETS is upheld. The First, Second, and Fourth circuits all have a majority of Democratic-appointed judges. But it is difficult to predict the future of the OSHA ETS as the panel of judges to hear the case is also selected randomly. 

© Polsinelli PC, Polsinelli LLP in CaliforniaNational Law Review, Volume XI, Number 315
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About this Author

Lilian Doan Davis, Polsinelli PC, Public Corporation Liabilities Lawyer, Whistleblower Claims Attorney
Associate

Lilian Davis helps private and public corporations, individuals, and municipalities identify and address potential liabilities. She brings a passion for the practice of employment law and a genuine interest in developing a strong relationship with her clients while gaining a thorough understanding of their business. Lilian understands the ongoing issues facing employers from a variety of perspectives. She counsels clients on management, compliance, and regulatory issues and investigates and responds to charges of employment discrimination. Her practice includes...

314.622.6669
Associate

Isaac Caverly focuses his practice on a wide variety of employment-related matters. Isaac is committed to understanding the industry in which clients operate and he provides valuable counsel to employers as they face sensitive workplace matters. His experience includes conducting discovery research and drafting memoranda related to employment cases and summary judgements as well as conducting employment due diligence for corporate transactions. Prior to joining Polsinelli, Isaac was a summer associate and served as a congressional intern and served as Co-President of the Iowa Student Bar...

816-218-1210
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