Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Mississippi throws out health reform challenge on jurisdictional grounds

A federal court in Mississippi has joined more than a dozen other districts in ruling that those seeking to overturn the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) do not have standing to file suit (a listing of many of these cases is available at In four other cases, judges have ruled on the merits of the challenges to the ACA.

In Lt. Gov. Phil Bryant vs. Eric Holder Jr. (Civ. Act No. 2:10-CV-76-KS-MTP), the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi stated that the lawsuit "contains insufficient allegations to establish that [the plaintiffs] will certainly be 'applicable individuals' who must comply with the minimum coverage provision [of the ACA]."

In addition, according to the court, "it is not certain from Plaintiffs' allegations that, in the event they were considered 'applicable individuals' they would incur the tax penalty [under the ACA] for non-compliance."

The four rulings that have been decided on the constitutionality of the ACA are as follows:
  • State Of Florida, et al. v. United States Department Of Health And Human Services, et al. (Case No. 3:10-Cv-91);
  • Commonwealth of Virginia v. Kathleen Sebelius (Civ. Act. No. 3:10CV188-HEH);
  • Liberty University v. U.S. (Case No. 6:10-cv-00015-nkm);
  • Thomas More Law Center, Jann Demars; John Ceci; Steven Hyder; And Salina Hyder, v. Barack Hussein Obama (No. 10-CV-11156).
For a comprehensive analysis of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and additional information on health reform and other developments in employee benefits, just click here.


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