January 19, 2021
In this episode, Suzanne Spradley and Chase Cannon look at a recent Supreme Court decision on ERISA preemption and state laws relating to pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs). Suzanne starts with a description of PBMs and state law regulation of PBMs. Chase and Suzanne discuss the meaning and application of ERISA preemption, and Suzanne outlines how lower courts and the Supreme Court have treated ERISA preemption previously. Suzanne tracks the background and arguments in the Rutledge case, and digs into the Supreme Court’s holding that ERISA does NOT preempt Arkansas’s PBM law. Chase and Suzanne close by discussing the potential implications of the holding for group health plans, both in and out of the PBM context.