Companies must tell employees about birth control opt-outs

Companies must notify their workers if they are not going to offer free contraception coverage in their employee health plans, the Department of Labor said Thursday.

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Labor published a notice on its website that said all “closely held” for-profit companies have to tell their workers if they plan to opt out of providing the coverage in response to the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision, which ruled the birth control mandate in ObamaCare violated federal law.

The notice was published in the form of a question and answer on Labor’s web site.

“For plans subject to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), ERISA requires disclosure of information relevant to coverage of preventive services, including contraceptive coverage,” it said.

The department says that as part of “longstanding regulations,” and the employer must explain what coverage areas aren’t provided in an insurance plan.

A senior administration official told the Huffington Post the move was in response to a Democratic sponsored bill that failed in the Senate yesterday that would have reversed the recent Supreme Court Hobby Lobby ruling.