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The decision on the ObamaCare ruling by the Supreme Court is in. The Supreme Court ObamaCare ruling was a 5-4 ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act. The final Ruling on ObamaCare had a few implications ranging from ObamaCare being defined as a tax and not a mandate and a choice for States to Opt-Out of Medicaid Expansion
The law was upheld on June 28, 2012. The final ruling on ObamaCare was a made by Supreme Court Judge Vinson.
The good news is the ObamaCare (the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Acts) that passed in 2010 is remain the law (abet with some changes), however during the ObamaCare Supreme Court ruling some important aspects of the health care bill were lost. The biggest loss in the ruling was to Medicaid and it has mostly slipped under the radar, but it will greatly affect Americas poorest 7%.
The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) v. Seblius (the official name of the ObamaCare supreme Court Ruling on ObamaCare) ruling upheld most of the bill. However a few changes were made, most importantly the ruling on Medicaid. The NFIB which claims to represent independent businesses but has constantly been accused of being a big business backed organization which goes after the nations poorest raised enough funds to get their repeal of ObamaCare to the supreme court.
The ruling on ObamaCare ruling on Medicaid, this allows states to reject Medicaid for their poorest (roughly 7% of the population). Even though it doesn't seem like a big deal this was a major victory for those who seek to repeal ObamaCare. You see, it is much easier to fight laws at a state level, this means that anti-Obamacare states (Red states and some swing states) are in danger of losing the option of Medicare. This will increase the cost of ObamaCare for the rest of Americans and leave many of the nations poorest without Medicare.
Although most of the law will be upheld the other major change is basically semantics. ObamaCare will no longer be a mandate (meaning Americans must buy health insurance, which keeps the cost down for all Americans) instead Obamacare will be a tax, meaning that those who opt out don't pay a tax and those who opt in will receive tax breaks. This doesn't change how ObamaCare affects the average American, but it does have an impact on the law moving forward.
Although ObamaCare was almost strike down due to some semantics over the difference between a tax, penalty and mandate the final ruling can be best summed up by Chief Justice Roberts:
"The Affordable Care Act's requirement that certain individuals pay a financial penalty for not obtaining health insurance may reasonably be characterized as a tax. Because the Constitution permits such a tax, it is not our role to forbid it, or to pass upon its wisdom or fairness."
Although the ObamaCare Bill was upheld by the ObamaCare ruling we should all keep in mind that upcoming elections will have a major impact on whether health care reform moves forward and is given a chance to grow or is disassemble before it can have a more significant impact on America. Mitt Romney has already promised that he will move to repeal ObamaCare on day 1. (ObamaCare Supreme Court Image Public Domain)
The ObamaCare is safe for now. Here are some aspects of the Bill that will help your family:
1. Americans Getting Health Care Through Their Employer: Under the Affordable Care Act all American's are required to have insurance. That means companies must either provide their workers with health insurance or deem that it would be cheaper to subsidize them or let them get health insurance through the state. In most cases this will have little impact on you financially (although you just may be saving money). The major difference is that for some employees will have additional protections provided by the supreme court's ruling on health care reform, namely no limits or restrictions on benefits, annual limits and as well as a few other protections detailed in the Affordable Health Care and Patient Protection Acts.
2. American's Receiving Health Care Coverage Through Medicare: The Affordable Care Act will continue to provide protections and benefits to seniors who receive coverage through Medicare. Since the Act was passed in 2010 Seniors have saved billions of dollars on the cost of prescription drugs, co-pays and premiums. This upholding of reform also helps to save money and offer better care seniors on Medicare Advantage. (However the aforementioned blow to Medicare being offered to the nations poorest will have a negative effect on all Americans).
3. Individual Policy Holders: Obamacare health care reform requires all U.S. citizens to have health care insurance. Of course if you all ready have private insurance the healthcare reform will have little impact on you. Your rates may shift slightly and your coverage will have added protections.
4. Uninsured Americans: The Supreme Court ruling means that most of the law set forth by Obama's health care reform will remain unchanged This means that all uninsured Americans will still have the option to buy health insurance through the state or federal exchange. Those Americans who cannot afford coverage can get a federal subsidy. Of course the law will offer the same protections to all Americans which include not being able to be turned away for preexisting conditions (effective 2014 if that aspect is not overturned by that point).
5. Small Business Owners: Truly small businesses have always been in a bad space when it comes to providing health insurance for their employees due to their income bracket. While health care reform will not solve this problem, it does offer more options for employers wishing to provide coverage to their employees. It's worth noting that ObamaCare does not tax businesses making under $250k, but does guarantee coverage to business owners and their employees.
The ObamaCare supreme court ruling has keep ObamaCare (mostly) intact for now. The law still stands, however time will be the test. If the Affordable Care Act goes to the supreme court again, the next ruling on ObamaCare could be it's last.