Health Reform WK-EDGE Court’s halt of Medicaid expansion request may span presidential administration change
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Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Court’s halt of Medicaid expansion request may span presidential administration change

North Carolina’s request to expand its Medicaid program under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) (P.L. 111-148) may now be decided by incoming Trump Administration officials, after a federal district court granted a temporary restraining order (TRO) preventing HHS from acting on the request for 14 days or until the court takes further action. The temporary halt was initiated by a complaint filed by state Senate Leader Phil Berger (R) and state House Speaker Tim Moore (R) (Berger v. Burwell, January 14, 2017, Flanagan, L.).

Complaint. The complaint alleges the incoming North Carolina administration, led by Governor Roy Cooper (D), unlawfully worked together with the outgoing Obama Administration to expand the state’s Medicaid program. In addition to violating state law requiring general assembly approval of Medicaid expansion, the complaint alleges, the Medicaid expansion request would "saddle North Carolinians with hundreds of millions of dollars of annual Medicaid expenses." The lawsuit, which does not name Cooper as a defendant, asserts that he has exceeded his executive authority.

Next steps. Before the court are HHS’ motion to vacate the TRO and the North Carolina lawmakers’ motion for preliminary and permanent injunctive relief. The court will hear the additional motions on Friday, January 20, 2017.

The case is No. 5:17-cv-25-FL.

Attorneys: Nicole Jo Moss (Cooper & Kirk PLLC) for Phil Berger. Joel L. McElvain, U.S. Department of Justice, for Sylvia Burwell, Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Companies: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services; North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services

Cases: CaseDecisions NewsFeed AccessNews AgencyNews MedicaidExpansionNews NorthCarolinaNews

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