Companies and HR professionals must still deal with Health Care Reform compliance requirements

After a Florida federal judge declared health care reform (HCR) was unconstitutional, we asked GMSHRM Director of Legislative Affairs, Andrew Rodman, Esq., employment law attorney, Stearns Weaver, to explain the ruling's implication on HRC compliance.


On January 31, 2011, a federal district court judge in Pensacola, Judge Roger Vinson, declared unconstitutional the federal health care legislation passed by Congress in 2010.  Specifically, Judge Vinson ruled that Congress exceeded the bounds of its authority by including in the legislation an “individual mandate” that requires people to buy health care or pay a fine.  

We "asked Andy" -GMSHRM Director of Legislative Affairs, Andrew Rodman, Esq., Stearns, Weaver - to respond to GMSHRM members and address how this ruling would impact their compliance with Health Care Reform:

"Despite Judge Roger Vinson’s ruling of unconstitutionality, this does not mean that Florida employers should ignore the health care reform legislation as if it were never enacted.  Why?  For one thing, other courts around the country have issued rulings that differ or conflict with Judge Vinson’s recent ruling.  Also, the Obama Administration has made it quite clear that Judge Vinson’s ruling will be appealed.  Reportedly, the Justice Department is also considering whether to request a “stay” of Judge Vinson’s ruling, pending appeal, in order to minimize any confusion about the ruling’s impact in the 26 states that are parties to the Florida litigation.  At the end of the day, Florida employers, and employers around the country, will not have a definitive ruling on the constitutionality of the health care legislation until the U.S. Supreme Court chimes in – which most believe will ultimately occur." 

In the meanwhile, companies and HR professionals are left to deal with compliance requirements.  Join us for the February 15, 2011 GMSHRM dinner meeting to hear a panel discussion on what some industry experts are saying about Health Care Reform and the demands and concerns that are still very much alive. Click here to get tickets for this dinner program,  Health Care Reform - What are the New Compliance Requirements?