Federal Rulings On Affordable Care Act Not Immediately Impacting Arkansas

Jul 22, 2014

Arkansas’s eligibility for subsidies through the federal health exchange isn’t being immediately impacted by contradictory federal court rulings over the Affordable Care Act.

In one, a three judge panel in Washington, DC said subsidies that cover low income workers can only be paid in states that have set up their own insurance exchanges. But the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, VA came to the opposite conclusion.  Arkansas has not set up its own exchange.

Kate Luck, a spokeswoman for the Arkansas Department of Human Services, says they’ll let the appeals process play out.

"The two opinions that were issued are actually in conflict with each other in regards to how that will affect Arkansas and the private option. So I think that we’re going to have to wait on the Supreme Court to rule to determine exactly how that’s going to affect us," Luck said. "However, Arkansas as a state is working toward establishing a state-based exchange, so maybe by the time the Supreme Court rules that won’t even be an issue for here in Arkansas."

More than 43,ooo Arkansans have completed the enrollment process through the exchange.

An earlier version of this story included an inaccurate reference to the state's private option.