Skip to comments.Idaho to Allow New Insurance Plans Outside of Federal Health Law
Posted on 01/26/2018 10:56:30 AM PST by UMCRevMom@aol.comEdited on 01/26/2018 10:59:10 AM PST by Admin Moderator. [history]
Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter
Idaho officials said they will begin allowing insurers to sell new plans that don't meet requirements set by the Affordable Care Act, a move that will test the limits of states' ability to carve out their own health-insurance rules.
Wednesday, the Idaho Department of Insurance said it would allow insurers in the state to begin offering "state-based plans" to consumers. These products could leave out some of the benefits mandated by the ACA for individual coverage. Insurers would be able to consider enrollees' medical history in setting their premiums, a practice known as underwriting, which isn't authorized under the ACA. The new state-based plans could also include dollar limits on total benefit payouts, which the ACA banned.
Health-policy experts said it isn't clear that the state has the authority to allow such products, or that it would be legal under federal law for insurers to sell them. "I don't see how this is reconciled with the basic ACA requirements," said Scott E. Harrington, a health-care-management professor.
Weston Trexler, a bureau chief in the Idaho Department of Insurance, said the state "believes we do have the authority to issue this bulletin and allow carriers to file . we've looked at the issues there and we feel we can make these plans available." The state will continue to enforce the ACA's rules for ACA plans, he said, and the new products are "not conflicting with the ACA products." He said they will provide a new option for consumers who can't afford or don't want the ACA-compliant plans, which have seen significant premium increases over the years.
The state's move will put a spotlight on the federal Department of Health and Human Services.
A spokesman for HHS didn't immediately respond to a request for comment late Wednesday.
Because a legal challenge can only be decided on the basis of the case that is brought before the U.S. Supreme Court. Nobody was challenging the right of an insurance company to sell a non-ACA compliant plan in that case because no insurance company had even tried to sell one that had been rejected by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
That's why there have been multiple challenges to ObamaCare, and there have been varying degrees of success in those challenges. The plaintiffs seem to be doing very well when they object to provisions of ObamaCare on religious grounds, for example. The Roberts decision, on the other hand, only addressed a very specific challenge to the individual mandate. The individual mandate was allowed to survive because the Supreme Court decided that it is, in fact, a tax -- and this was on pretty solid legal grounds, by the way.
It's not the "whole kit and caboodle" of ObamaCare that will be unconstitutional until someone challenges the Federal government's authority to impose all of the other idiotic provisions of the law -- like the rate caps, the elimination of lifetime coverage limits, the minimal essential coverage requirements (which is where the Idaho situation may lead), etc.
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