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June 17, 2024

Federal Court Granted Restraining Order Against Northshore University Healthsystem re: COVID Shots

By John Kraft & Kirk Allen

On October 31, 2021


The United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois held a Hearing on a Motion for Temporary Restraining Order (with its accompanying memorandum of law) on October 29, 2021, and has issued a temporary restraining order against Northshore University Healthsystem (“NUH”) in reference to requiring COVID-19 shots.

The suit was brought under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Emergency Use Authorization statute (21 U.S.C. §360bbb- 3(e)(1)(A)(ii)(III)), and the Illinois Right of Conscience Act.

The TRO will become effective on November 1, 2021, after a meet and confer between both parties to agree on the final text of the binding restraining order.

The lawsuit was filed by fourteen unnamed employees of NUH, and a hearing on motions for preliminary injunction is set for November 16, 2021. The hearing will be telephonic.

From the TRO:

  • the temporary restraining order is granted in part
  • The parties are ordered to meet and confer on (1) the final text of a binding restraining order and (2) security (see Fed. R. Civ. P. 65(c)), and the parties should submit a proposed order to proposed_order_kness4; by 5:00
    P.M. on 11/1/2021
  • As explained in the Court’s oral order, that temporary restraining order will become effective on 11/1/2021, and the Court will consider an extension after fourteen days pending resolution of the upcoming preliminary injunction hearing
  • In their briefing, the parties should consider specifically addressing the question of potential irreparable harm, and whether those harms apply to private defendants in the Title VII context.
  • As well, the parties should consider addressing the relevance of potential accommodations granted for medical or disability reasons to Plaintiffs seeking similar accommodations for religious reasons.
  • The parties should also consider addressing whether Plaintiffs may continue to
    pursue their case pseudonymously (recognizing that Plaintiff has already submitted a brief on the issue). The Court will allow oversized briefs, within reason and only to the extent truly necessary to fully brief the arguments
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1 Comment
  • Tony
    Posted at 21:29h, 31 October Reply

    This looks interesting. Might get a healthcare provider to assume liability for vaccine mandate if they play their cards right.

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