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SCOTUS announced it will hear ACA case
Old 03-02-2020, 10:20 AM   #1
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SCOTUS announced it will hear ACA case

The Supreme Court announced this morning it will hear the pending ACA cases. From SCOTUSblog https://www.scotusblog.com/2020/03/j...s/#more-292206

Quote:
Just as it did almost eight years ago, the Supreme Court will once again weigh in on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Actís individual mandate. The justices announced today that they had granted two petitions involving the ACA Ė one by California and a group of states, the other by Texas and a different group of states Ė asking the Supreme Court to review a ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit that struck down the mandate. The justices will hear oral argument in the case next fall, with a decision likely to follow sometime in 2021.

The Supreme Court has already rejected a challenge to the constitutionality of the mandate once. In 2012, Chief Justice John Roberts agreed with the courtís four more liberal justices that the mandate was constitutional because the penalty imposed on individuals who did not buy health insurance was a tax, which the Constitution allows Congress to impose.
California vs Texas
Quote:
Issues: (1) Whether the individual and state plaintiffs in this case have established Article III standing to challenge the minimum-coverage provision in Section 5000A(a) of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA); (2) whether reducing the amount specified in Section 5000A(c) to zero rendered the minimum-coverage provision unconstitutional; and (3) if so, whether the minimum-coverage provision is severable from the rest of the ACA.
Texas vs California
Quote:
Issues: (1) Whether the unconstitutional individual mandate to purchase minimum essential coverage is severable from the remainder of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; and (2) whether the district court properly declared the ACA invalid in its entirety and unenforceable anywhere.
The two cases have been consolidated and will be heard during the fall and a decision will not be announced until sometime in 2021.

Until then, much will be said and written, all of which will be speculative and much will be no more than electoral rhetoric. Nothing really meaningful or substantive, certainly not up to our high standard of discourse.
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Old 03-02-2020, 10:28 AM   #2
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So, we're good for 2020. If the 2021 decision shoots down the ACA, does it take effect immediately or the next year? Medicare 2022 for us. I can't imagine the entire healthcare system changing course that quickly.
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Old 03-02-2020, 12:08 PM   #3
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There's a massive amount of behind-the-scenes work that will need done throughout the healthcare sector if the ACA is overturned, so I would expect it to be at least through the end of the year. I'm optimistic, though, that it will be upheld.
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Old 03-02-2020, 01:16 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by GenXguy View Post
There's a massive amount of behind-the-scenes work that will need done throughout the healthcare sector if the ACA is overturned, so I would expect it to be at least through the end of the year. I'm optimistic, though, that it will be upheld.
The main reason for such optimism, IMO, is that even though there is a $0 penalty (or "tax") for violating the individual mandate now, that penalty (or tax) was NOT written out of the law, just reset to zero. The law authorizing the penalty/tax is still part of the law which was already upheld. Setting the "tax" to zero does not mean Congress doesn't have the authority to raise it again in the future. IMO (which is worth what you paid for it), this does not fundamentally alter the reasons why Chief Justice Roberts voted to uphold the law in the beginning. The Congressional power to alter the tax for violating the mandate is still in place.

All that said, one takeaway from this is to prepare to have a Plan B if you are taking advantage of provisions of this law, just in case.
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Old 03-02-2020, 01:45 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
The main reason for such optimism, IMO, is that even though there is a $0 penalty (or "tax") for violating the individual mandate now, that penalty (or tax) was NOT written out of the law, just reset to zero. The law authorizing the penalty/tax is still part of the law which was already upheld. Setting the "tax" to zero does not mean Congress doesn't have the authority to raise it again in the future. IMO (which is worth what you paid for it), this does not fundamentally alter the reasons why Chief Justice Roberts voted to uphold the law in the beginning. The Congressional power to alter the tax for violating the mandate is still in place.

All that said, one takeaway from this is to prepare to have a Plan B if you are taking advantage of provisions of this law, just in case.
Agree.
I believe it would last at least through 2021 then. I need it through 2024.
Unfortunately my plan B is to pay a lot more dough. Not a good blow the dough comment.
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Old 03-02-2020, 04:42 PM   #6
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ACA will be upheld. 4+1 (Roberts) seals the deal. You heard it here first.

Disclaimer: If RBG (or any other liberal justice) tips over, all bet are off.
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Old 03-03-2020, 09:49 AM   #7
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Agreed, I can't see why Roberts would rule against it when he stretched to uphold it 8 years ago. Not to mention that the court is well aware of the massive disruption this would cause for the entire health insurance market (not just ACA). Just need the current court to remain.
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