The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up a case challenging the law’s requirement that insurers cover contraception, an important pillar of the Affordable Care Act.
The case was brought by two conservative groups that sued to overturn the requirement, arguing that it infringes on their religious beliefs.
The justices are split 4-4.
Lawyers for Hobby Lobby Stores Inc. and the Christian conservative Alliance Defending Freedom said they will ask the high court to reconsider a decision in January that upheld a lower court ruling that upheld the law.
The high court could also rule in their favor.
Hobby Lobby is one of several companies that have challenged the requirement as violating the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
In the case, Hobby Lobby and the American Civil Liberties Union of Oklahoma argued that the requirement is an impermissible government endorsement of religion.
They said that requiring employers to provide contraceptives and other reproductive health care violates their religious freedoms, including the right to freedom of conscience.
The justices could also weigh in on whether employers are allowed to make religious exemptions for their employees or other non-religious groups.
The plaintiffs argued that they are not seeking to advance any religious beliefs, but rather to ensure that employees have access to contraceptives and health care.
The appeals court ruled in Hobby Lobby’s favor, saying that the religious rights of the employees in the case were outweighed by the employer’s religious beliefs and a legitimate interest in ensuring that employees receive the full range of contraceptive coverage.
The court ruled that the plaintiffs’ religious objections are not sufficient to invalidate the requirement.
The law’s constitutionality has been upheld on appeal in other cases, but this case has not.
The court could decide to take the case to the Supreme Court.
Hospitals, for example, have argued that allowing employees to opt out of their employer-provided insurance coverage could lead to higher premiums for patients.