A federal appeals court panel has ruled that President Joe Biden's vaccine mandate for larger private employers can take effect.
Friday's 2-1 ruling from a panel of judges on the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reverses a lower-court ruling that had paused the requirement.
Republican-led states are challenging the rule, which would apply to companies with at least 100 workers.
It was initially planned to take effect on Jan. 4, but it's not clear now when it might.
According to the Associated Press, companies with 100 or more employees would be affected by the vaccine requirement, covering about 84 million workers.
Those unvaccinated would have to wear masks and be subject to testing weekly for coronavirus.
Those who work outdoors or at home could have exceptions.
South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson says the fight against the mandate will continue.
Utah AG Sean Reyes, who is also involved in fighting the mandate, issued a statement in response to Friday's update:
"Late today, we were disappointed to learn that the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals lifted the nationwide stay on the vaccine mandate for private businesses employing more than 100 people. Utah and several dozen states intend to seek immediate, emergency relief with the U.S. Supreme Court. We remain confident that the Court will agree that the mandate is unconstitutional federal overreach. Regardless, the Sixth Circuit’s ruling does not immediately affect Utah because our state’s OSHA Division has not adopted the rule."
The Sixth Circuit Court Appeals has reinstated the nationwide #VaccineMandate for private businesses with more than 100 employees. But Utah is NOT immediately affected.
From AG Reyes: pic.twitter.com/YwETN1ytFV
— Utah Attorney General (@UtahAG) December 18, 2021