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Court Rules Against ACA Individual Mandate

December 19, 2019
Court Rules Against ACA Individual Mandate

On December 18, 2019, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled on a key component of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), declaring that without a tax penalty, the individual mandate that most Americans have health insurance is unconstitutional. This decision sends the case back to the District Court to determine if the entire ACA or specific provisions of the law are unconstitutional.

For the time being, the ACA remains the law. ACA protections, including those for people with pre-existing conditions, the prohibition of lifetime caps, and the ability of children to remain on their parent’s insurance until they are 26, remain intact. People who have just enrolled in health plans for 2020 and Medicaid beneficiaries will continue to benefit from ACA protections.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, who leads a collation of 20 states fighting to protect the law, has said he will petition the Supreme Court to hear the case.  The Supreme Court will decide whether and when to hear the case.

Dawn Rotellini, NHF’s interim CEO, stressed that NHF would continue to advocate for preserving the ACA. “People with bleeding disorders need comprehensive healthcare coverage to lead healthy lives,” she said.  “The consumer protections provided by the ACA have been at the center of NHF’s advocacy efforts prior to 2010 when the law was passed. NHF will continue to work to preserve these protections, which benefit not only people with bleeding disorders, but all Americans with chronic conditions.