On June 28, 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated decision on the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (i.e., "health care reform"), finding the individual mandate within Congress' taxing power and the health care reform law constitutional. For a more detailed discussion of the decision, please see the alert U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Affordable Care Act found here.
In upholding the validity of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act's individual mandate (and, in a more narrow ruling, the Medicaid expansion provisions of the law), the U.S. Supreme Court has paved the way for full health care reform implementation in January 2014. While group health plan sponsors and plan administrators may have shifted their focus away from health care reform as the constitutionality of the law was being decided, plan sponsors and administrators will want to renew their efforts and continue to take the necessary steps to comply with new and existing requirements for 2012 and beyond.
Click on the PDF button above for a summary of some of the key health care reform provisions requiring health plan sponsors' and administrators' attention in the next 18 months.