The Supreme Court of the United States has upheld the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare.
This decision upholds President Obama's hallmark legislation and will have an impact on almost every American from a newborn to the elderly.
Here are five ways that the Obamacare impacts the average citizen:
- Uninsured. The decision leaves in place the individual mandate that requires all Americans to have health insurance by 2014 or face a tax. Under the law, health care exchanges will be set up to offer cheaper health care options for low-income individuals.
- Insured. There was some fear that insurance premiums would see a drastic spike had parts of the law remained. But since the Court upheld the Affordable Care Act, the individual mandate will ensure that insurers have a steady stream of revenue, alleviating the possible effects of any spike.
- Adult Children. Obamacare requires insurers to cover children of those they insure up to the age of 26. This requirement remains in place and the 2.5 million young adults from age 19 to 25 can continue under their parents' health care plans.
- Individuals with Preexisting Conditions. As already mentioned, insurers will not be able to discriminate against (or limit benefits of) people with preexisting health conditions.
- Taxpayers. The government will likely have to spend money to subsidize people who simply can't afford health insurance, no matter how cheap. This money will come out of taxes.
The Supreme Court upheld Obamacare by a 5-4 vote, with the majority opinion penned by Chief Justice John Roberts. All Americans will have to carry health insurance by 2014, impacting almost every American in some way. Stay tuned as we continue to break down the implications of the Court's landmark Affordable Care Act ruling.
- Affordable Care Act Upheld, With Roberts Writing Majority Opinion (FindLaw's Decided)
- Supreme Court upholds healthcare law in Obama triumph (Reuters)
- Read the Full Supreme Court Opinion Upholding Obamacare's Individual Mandate (FindLaw's Courtside)