- The U.S. Supreme Court was scheduled to hear oral argument Nov. 10 in California v. Texas.
- Even conservative legal scholars have questioned the merits of the case. And the law has functioned just fine with a $0 tax penalty for failing to comply with the individual mandate.
- While each individual ratings area within a state or federal marketplace is unique, the general trend is that requested premium increases are relatively low (on average 2.1%) and more plans have either entered the ACA market or expanded the ratings areas in which they offer products for plan year 2021.
This is the third potentially existential challenge to the ACA to make it to the high court, with oral arguments held Nov. 10.
The potential outcomes in this case range from:
- Benign: The case is bounced on a technical issue (e.g. the parties involved don’t have standing), the justices determine Texas’s argument frivolous, or the individual mandate is found to be unconstitutional but severable from the rest of the law.
- Something less benign: The individual mandate is unconstitutional and not severable from the insurance market reform provisions.
- Catastrophic: The individual mandate is unconstitutional and inseverable so the entirety of the law to is overturned.
The exhibit below from Avalere simply illustrates the range of possibilities.