Yesterday, the United States Supreme Court agreed to hear the Texas v. US case. As we reported in December, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was unconstitutional. This was based on the fact that the constitutionality of the ACA had previously been determined by the Supreme Court to be based on Congress’s taxing authority and the individual mandate tax penalty was eliminated meaning that taxing authority no longer existed.
The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals originally sent the case back down to the District Court to determine whether the whole law need to be struck down as unconstitutional or if parts of it could remain. However, the House of Representatives and several states that support the ACA petitioned the Supreme Court to take the case up. While the Court did deny an expedited hearing which would allow the case to be heard immediately, it has granted a petition for appeal which will allow the case to be heard in its next term. That means that the earliest oral arguments would be scheduled in the case would be in October and it’s possible a decision would not come out until next year.
It is important to remember that this case does not have any legal effect on the current marketplace and people who receive their health insurance coverage will continue to be covered and receive any premium assistance to which they are entitled while this case is pending before the Supreme Court.