Health Care Mandate Temporarily Blocked by U.S. Judge
A U.S. District Judge in Oregon has temporarily blocked the Trump administrations’ healthcare mandate which would bar U.S. entry for any prospective immigrant who cannot prove they would be covered by qualifying health insurance within their first 30 days in the U.S. or have the financial means to pay for all “reasonably foreseeable” medical expenses.
The judge’s order, which was issued on November 2, will block the Trump Administration from implementing the healthcare ban for 28 days. On November 22, the judge will determine whether to issue a preliminary injunction in the case, which would last for the entire time the case is pending.
The lawsuit against the ban was filed by the American Immigration Council (AIC), an organization that utilizes litigation, research, and legislative and administrative advocacy to work towards a more and just immigration system. The lawsuit contends that the healthcare ban violates the law and will radically reduce the number of people who could enter the U.S. As many as two-thirds of all prospective immigrants (an estimated 375,000 people, annually) who would otherwise qualify for an immigrant visa would be banned.
AIC further warns that the healthcare ban would impose a direct wealth test on immigrants. Under the healthcare ban, immigrants must demonstrate that they will be covered by private health insurance. Subsidized health insurance plans purchased through the Affordable Care Act exchange would not be counted, though the majority of U.S. citizens enrolled in the individual market do receive some type of subsidy. AIC also points out the healthcare ban does not provide guidance about what constitutes a “reasonably foreseeable medical cost” though immigrants will need to prove they are wealthy enough to cover these costs if they do not have private insurance.
AIC argues that the healthcare ban will create a huge hurdle for immigrants lacking employer-provided health insurance, especially those seeking family-based immigration benefits.
For more information view the following AIC blogs: