Effects of the Recent Supreme Court Ruling on Health Care Reform

On Thursday, the Supreme Court ruled to uphold President Obama’s health care reform law. The ruling is a huge victory for the President. If Romney comes into office, he can have the agencies delay the ruling or refuse to enforce those already on the books. On the other hand, if Obama is reelected, he will veto any attempt to kill or weaken the law and move forward with implementing it. 

The new law requires that by 2014, all Americans must purchase health insurance or pay a penalty. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that this will cause 4 million workers to sign up for health care for the first time, increasing costs for their employers. However, other provisions are set to go into effect sooner. For example, in October of this year, employers must provide workers with a four-page, easy-to-read summary of benefit coverage. Then in the spring of 2013, the law requires employers to give workers information on how state exchanges and government subsidies will operate.

Other key elements to take effect in 2014 include the “employer responsibility” provisions that may subject employers with 50 or more workers to penalties; incentives to encourage individuals to engage in wellness programs; and requirements to automatically enroll workers into a health plan. Currently, several states are behind in implementing these provisions and will need to work hard to meet the 2014 deadline.

For more information on Thursday’s ruling, visit Kiplinger.