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Intergovernmental Immunity for the Department of Veterans Affairs and Its Employees When Providing Certain Abortion Services

Date of Issuance:

The rule issued by the Department of Veterans Affairs on Reproductive Health Services, 87 Fed. Reg. 55,287 (Sept. 9, 2022), is a lawful exercise of VA’s authority. States may not impose criminal or civil liability on VA employees—including doctors, nurses, and administrative staff—who provide or facilitate abortions or related services in a manner authorized by federal law, including VA’s rule. The Supremacy Clause bars state officials from penalizing VA employees for performing their federal functions, whether through criminal prosecution, license revocation proceedings, or civil litigation.

Updated November 22, 2022