HR Policy Urges Supreme Court to Reject State's Attack on ERISA Preemption

October 23, 2015

This week, HR Policy Association and four other business groups filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in a case where the State of Vermont would undercut ERISA's preemption provision by mandating self-insured employers submit detailed health care claims data to the state's all-payer claims database.  Our brief notes that "[t]he more States are empowered to impose burdensome regulatory requirements on employers, the more they will do so.  This slippery slope presents a serious threat to the viability of welfare benefit plans, and thus to the purposes of ERISA," and that a decision in favor of Vermont would "undercut ERISA's objectives by subjecting self-funded plans to a morass of state reporting requirements that Congress neither intended nor allowed in enacting ERISA."  The brief, filed in a case involving Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, also notes that Vermont and other states with all-payer claims databases can obtain the claims information they need from other sources, such as providers, without burdening self-funded plans.  The amicus brief was prepared by Brian D. Netter, Matthew A Waring, and Nancy G. Ross of Mayer Brown LLP.