For Immediate Release - June 25, 2015

AG Healey Statement on U.S. Supreme Court's Decision to Support Health Insurance Assistance Under the Affordable Care Act

AG Previously Joined Multistate Effort in Defense of Nationwide Access to Tax Credits When Purchasing Health Insurance under the National Health Care Law

BOSTON – Attorney General Maura Healey today issued this statement in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the case of King v. Burwell, which will provide millions of Americans access to premium-assistance tax credits under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) when purchasing health insurance through the federal government.

“Today’s decision is great news for health care in this country. This ruling upholds a critical piece of the Affordable Care Act that helps insure millions of low-income and middle class families. We know first-hand in Massachusetts the many benefits of increasing access to quality, affordable health care. I hope we can now put the divisive litigation tactics behind us and move forward as a country to implement this law that ensures health care access for so many families who need it.”

 

BACKGROUND:

In January, AG Healey joined a coalition of states in filing an amicus brief links to PDF file in the U.S. Supreme Court, led by Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring, along with 20 states and the District of Columbia, in the case of King v. Burwell. The states argued that the denial of tax credits would disrupt insurance markets throughout the United States.

Unlike Massachusetts, which has established its own state-run enrollment website where individuals can buy subsidized health plans, 34 states do not have their own health insurance exchanges, instead relying on the federal government to set up “federally-facilitated exchanges” (FFEs) on their behalf. Because Massachusetts created its own exchange, the subsidies for Massachusetts consumers are not directly affected by today’s decision.

In July 2014, a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled unanimously in King v. Burwell that customers of a federally-facilitated exchange were eligible for financial assistance.

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