Judge rules that states using federal health exchange can't offer premium subsidies

The decision by a federal district judge in Oklahoma is the latest ruling regarding whether consumers in states that opted to use the federal insurance marketplace are entitled to subsidies. Because court decisions have differed, many experts say the question will ultimately be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

The New York Times: U.S. Cannot Subsidize Health Plans In States With No Marketplace, A Judge Rules
A federal district judge in Oklahoma dealt a blow to the Affordable Care Act on Tuesday, ruling that the federal government could not subsidize health insurance in three dozen states that refused to establish their own marketplaces. This appears to increase the likelihood that the Supreme Court will ultimately resolve the issue (Pear, 9/30).

The Wall Street Journal: Federal Judge Rules Against Some Affordable Health Care Subsidies
A federal judge in Oklahoma ruled that subsidies under the Affordable Care Act can't go to consumers who obtained health coverage through a federal exchange. The decision adds to a mix of rulings on whether consumers in states relying on the federal marketplace are legally entitled to subsidies, a question that many expect will wind up before the U.S. Supreme Court. Two U.S. appeals courts in July issued conflicting rulings on health-law subsidies, raising questions about the fate of tax credits provided to millions of Americans (Armour, 9/30).

Politico: Judge Rules Against White House On Affordable Care Act
Judge Ronald A. White said that the administration's decision to allow subsidies to go through either a state-run health insurance exchange or the federal exchange is an improper and invalid reading of the Affordable Care Act and must be struck. White's ruling marks the second judgment against the government on the subsidy question and comes as the Supreme Court could decide whether to weigh in (Haberkorn, 9/30).

Reuters: Oklahoma Judge Rules Against Obamacare Subsidies
A federal judge in Oklahoma ruled on Tuesday that tax subsidies vital to the implementation of President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law are unlawful, giving a boost to opponents of the measure known as Obamacare. U.S. District Judge Ronald White found that the Internal Revenue Service rule that the Obama administration issued to set up tax-credit subsidies to help people afford insurance premiums under Obamacare was "an invalid implementation" of the law based on his interpretation of it. White, who was appointed by Republican President George W. Bush, put his ruling on hold pending an appeal (Hurley, 9/30)..

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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