Supreme Court ruled on cases regarding the vaccine mandate, arbitration, and more
WASHINGTON, D.C. (July 6, 2022) – The U.S. Supreme Court decided several cases this term that will have an immediate positive effect on small businesses throughout the country. NFIB represented the small business community in five cases. NFIB was the lead plaintiff in the vaccine mandate case, NFIB v. OSHA, and filed amicus briefs in four other cases.
“From the vaccine mandate to arbitration cases, small businesses had a successful term at the Supreme Court,” said Karen Harned, Executive Director of NFIB’s Small Business Legal Center. “The courts are fundamentally the last line of defense for small businesses regarding government overreach, burdensome regulations, and costly mandates. The cases decided this term will benefit small businesses across various industries.”
2021-2022 Case Wrap-Up:
NFIB v. OSHA
In January, the Supreme Court issued a historic opinion in the unprecedented vaccine mandate case where NFIB was the lead plaintiff. For the first time in more than 50 years, the Supreme Court heard arguments on an emergency application for relief and issued a stay of the mandate. A few weeks later, OSHA withdrew its vaccine mandate emergency temporary standard for businesses. NFIB’s press release is available here.
Boechler P.C. v. IRS
The U.S. Supreme Court reversed the Eighth Circuit’s decision upholding the Tax Court’s refusal to hear a taxpayer’s challenge to an IRS assessment. The Court held that a 30-day deadline to file a petition in the Tax Court for review of an IRS collection assessment is not a jurisdictional bar, which will save small business owners from costly and unreasonable fines. NFIB’s press release is available here.
Viking River Cruises v. Angie Moriana
This case concerned the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) protection of individualized arbitration. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed that the FAA’s pro-arbitration mandate should apply to individual California Private Attorneys General Act (PAGA) claims, which will go a long way in protecting small businesses from an onslaught of PAGA litigation, including frivolous lawsuits brought under PAGA and similar state laws. NFIB’s press release is available here.
Cummings v. Premier Rehab Keller
The Court decided whether damages for emotional distress are available for violations of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other statutes incorporating its remedies. The justices held that these statutes do not permit recovery of emotional distress damages for victims of discrimination. This outcome correctly limited small business liability. NFIB’s press release is available here.
West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency
In one of the last opinions of this term, the Supreme Court held that Section 111 of the Clean Air Act did not give EPA authority to transform the nation’s electricity grid and that such a decision must come from Congress or an agency acting upon a “clear delegation” from Congress. Small businesses repeatedly report energy costs as a significant problem and agree that EPA needs authority from Congress before imposing costly and significant regulations on the energy sector. NFIB’s press release is available here.
The NFIB Small Business Legal Center protects the rights of small business owners in the nation’s courts. NFIB is currently active in more than 40 cases in federal and state courts across the country and in the U.S. Supreme Court.