- Jul 2, 2003
Can employers require Covid vaccination?“In general, yes, employers are able to mandate the vaccine when it becomes available with, of course, a bunch of caveats,” says employment lawyer Lindsay Ryan, listing possible exemptions for those with specific medical conditions and those with sincerely held religious convictions.
Ryan emphasizes that state laws regulating what constitutes reasonable accommodations for religious groups vary significantly, but that “under federal law, employers don’t have to grant a religious accommodation if doing so would result in more than a de minimis cost to the operation of the business.”
“De minimis” is Latin for “of minimum importance” and is used in law to refer to a total so small that it is not even recognized.
Given how significantly the pandemic has impacted businesses, Ryan says “this is a pretty low standard.” Meaning, many employers will likely have legal ground to require vaccination.