Tag Archives: Supreme Court

Supreme Court Backs Healthcare Mandate

The Supreme Court upheld the insurance mandate in President Obama’s healthcare law.

The court said Congress has the authority to enforce the healthcare law’s individual mandate, which will require most U.S. taxpayers to purchase insurance or pay a penalty.

“Nothing in the Constitution guarantees that individuals may avoid taxation by inactivity,” Roberts said from the bench.

The court did not give approval to an expansion of Congressional powers to regulate commerce.

The court chipped away at the law’s Medicaid expansion without striking it down entirely. It said the federal government cannot withhold all Medicaid funding from states that choose not to take part in the expansion, but must allow states a choice between participating in the expanded program or leaving it as is.

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Supreme Court Decision on Health Care, Part II

The healthcare law, under review by the Supreme Court, establishes a series of reforms over several years, including banning insurance companies from denying coverage to people with pre-existing conditions, forbidding insurers from setting a dollar limit on health coverage payouts, and requiring insurers to cover preventative care at no additional cost.

It requires individuals to buy health insurance through their employers or a state-sponsored exchange, or face a fine beginning in 2014.

Twenty-six states, led by Florida, say individuals cannot be forced to buy insurance. They argue that if that provision is unconstitutional, the entire law must go.

We do not know if the law will be upheld as constitutional, found unconstitutional in its entirety or whether parts will be found constitutional and other parts found to be unconstitutional.

We will all await Thursday’s verdict.

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Supreme Court Decision on Health Care, Part I

The Supreme Court decision that is scheduled to come out on Thursday about the Health Care Bill will impact Americans immediately and will have a long term effect on how we get medicine and health care.

The decision will also impact certain areas of “commerce.”

A key question is whether the federal government can require most Americans to buy health insurance or pay a fine.

Critics argue that such a mandate is an unconstitutional intrusion on individual freedom.

Supporters of the individual mandate argue that it is the best way for healthcare reform to work.


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Supreme Court Ruling on Health Care Bill Almost Here

The Supreme Court will deliver its ruling on the constitutionality of healthcare reform on Thursday.

This ruling is one of the most anticipated in decades. The Supreme Court decision on President Obama’s healthcare law has widespread implications for federal power, the 2012 presidential election and healthcare in America.

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The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

Clients and friends are asking: When will the Supreme Court make a decision?

The justices did not give notice as to when a decision will be announced.  Perhaps it will be at the end of this term, which is the last week of June.

There has been a great deal of speculation centering on the tone and content of the questions during oral arguments.  Although questions at oral arguments may be indicators of the justices’ views, the tone may be misleading.

For now, we must wait.

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Supreme Court Rules: Youth’s Age Is Relevant in Miranda Analysis

A youth’s age is relevant when deciding whether a person being questioned by police is in “custody,” triggering the need for a Miranda warning, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 5-4 decision.
At issue was whether J.D.B., a 13-year-old special education student, had the right to a Miranda warning when he was pulled from his middle school classroom and questioned by a police officer. The North Carolina Supreme Court had ruled the teen was not in custody when he was questioned, so a Miranda warning was not required.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who wrote the majority opinion, said age is relevant to the analysis and remanded for a new determination of whether the student was in custody. “To hold, as the state requests, that a child’s age is never relevant to whether a suspect has been taken into custody—and thus to ignore the very real differences between children and adults—would be to deny children the full scope of the procedural safeguards that Miranda guarantees to adults,” she wrote.
The ABA had filed an amicus brief in the case arguing that children, as compared to adults, have unique vulnerabilities. It is the third time in recent years that the ABA has filed an amicus brief on the unique status of children.

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Are Schools Discouraging Undocumented Immigrant Student Enrollment?

The U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, the U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights and Office of the General Counsel addressed this question in a “dear colleague” letter issued May 6, 2011. “Recently, we have become aware of student enrollment practices that may chill or discourage the participation, or lead to the exclusion, of students based on their or their parents’ or guardians’ actual or perceived citizenship or immigration status,” says the “dear colleague” letter.

The letter cites Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on such factors as race, color, or national origin, by public schools. It also cites Plyler v. Doe, the 1982 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that held a state may not deny access to a basic public education to any child, whether that child is present in the country legally or not.

The letter and accompanying materials clarify that schools may ask for birth certificates to establish age requirements, but may not bar enrollment because a child has a foreign birth certificate. Furthermore, schools may not deny enrollment if parents refuse to provide a child’s Social Security Number.

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