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New York’s Highest Court Confirms Mandatory Abortion Coverage

According to breaking news received by Live Insurance Info, the New York High Court has upheld the insurance coverage requirement in a primary ruling on abortion in its decision late Tuesday evening. New York will continue to require health insurance plans to cover medically necessary abortion procedures, the high court said Tuesday.

Challenge by Religious Groups

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany and other church groups challenged the rule in court, arguing that the policy’s exemptions for religious exemptions were too narrow and that some businesses would be forced to infringe on their religious freedom.

Policy and Legal Background

State finance regulators approved this policy in 2017. The state legislature separately codified the abortion coverage regulation into law in 2022. Religious groups filed suit on their behalf, not on the law but on this regulation.

Potential Implications of the Challenge

Had the religious groups been successful in their case against the regulation, the appeal would have had the most weight in the Court of Appeals case because the state law could have been challenged using a similar legal argument.

Focus of the Court’s Deliberation

Arguments before the high court last month focused on whether the state’s criteria for religious exemptions were clear and whether officials had too much discretion in deciding which companies would fall under the rule. I will not have to follow. The state recognizes a religious exemption as one whose purpose is to propagate religious values. It primarily employs and serves people who share similar religious principles. It is classified as a religious nonprofit under federal law.

Reaction from Government and Religious Entities

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, called the decision an “important step toward protecting fundamental freedoms.” The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany has said that it will appeal against this decision to the US Supreme Court and will fight this decision as long as possible.

Statement from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany

The provinces issued a statement saying, “We believe that this decision is very sad and unconstitutional because it amounts to government interference in our fundamental rights to practice our freedom of faith and conscience.” We condemn this decision, and we will go to the Supreme Court against it. The final decision on constitutionality will be taken by the United States Supreme Court, and we are sure that the decision will be changed.

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