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Report: Idaho regulator may sue CMS if alternative ACA plans are blocked

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Report: Idaho regulator may sue CMS if alternative ACA plans are blocked

Idaho's chief insurance regulator said he may take the federal government to court if it blocks his approval to allow the sale of alternative health plans that circumvent Affordable Care Act rules, according to news reports.

Idaho's Insurance Director Dean Cameron told Modern Healthcare he would sue the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services if Administrator Seema Verma stymies the sale of the state-based plans.

Idaho has come under fire for drawing up plans that would allow the sale of inexpensive plans that do not comply with the coverage requirements of the ACA.

In a letter to Cameron and Idaho Gov. C. L. "Butch" Otter, Verma wrote that while she appreciates the state's attempt to keep premiums under control, she could not allow them to be sold as they violate the health law.

Verma suggested in the letter that the proposal be refashioned into short-term, limited duration plans, aligning the state's efforts with proposed rulemaking the agency is processing.

But after a March 15 meeting first reported by the Associated Press among Cameron; Verma; Sen. James Risch, R-Id.; and Lt. Gov. Brad Little, the insurance regulator said he "can't work" with Verma's proposition, Modern Healthcare wrote.

"Perhaps a lawsuit is an approach we have to consider," Cameron told Modern Healthcare. "It's not our hope. We want to work with the administration and we hope to convince them."