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Wednesday, June 13, 2012 - 1:00pm

Healthcare Exchange Issue For Georgia

A landmark Supreme Court decision regarding the constitutionality of President Obama’s health care plan could be handed down any day now.

Attorney General Sam Olens met with healthcare policy advisors to discuss the impact on Georgia.

If the law is upheld, Georgians would have to purchase health insurance in 2014. If that mandate is struck down, the law could be dismantled: Preexisting conditions could once again be cause for losing insurance access, and people under the age of 26 would lose the option of staying on their parents' health insurance.

Attorney General, Sam Olens, represented Georgia as one of 26 plaintiffs before the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that the law is unconstitutional. He says his greatest concern for Georgia is the healthcare exchange issue:

“If the President wins re-election, the state would then need to consider legislation next session to deal with the exchange issue.”

Under Obama’s plan, each state must create a healthcare exchange—which is a marketplace for consumers to find affordable healthcare.

Senior Managing Director in McKenna Long & Aldridge’s Public Policy and Regulatory Affairs practice, Cindy Gillespie, who leads the Health Care Policy team, says if the court rules to strike parts of the law, it could cause confusion about legal actions that have already been put in place:

"What happens to everything that’s been done? Contracts that have been written? What happens to those? One of the key things to look at when the decision comes down, is do they say that this decision is retroactively applied, or will they apply it prospectively going forward from the date of the decision.”