The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an appeal from insurers who argued that they were able to sell coverage to people with pre-existing conditions because of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate.
The court declined to review the case, which centers on whether a state law requiring individuals to have insurance should apply to plans sold on state-based exchanges.
The justices agreed with the plaintiffs in March, ruling that the mandate is a “fundamental part” of the federal health care law and that states have the right to impose their own coverage requirements.
Under the court’s ruling, the insurers could not offer coverage in California because of a requirement that they cover maternity care.
The decision leaves in place the mandate that most states set a minimum amount of insurance for the insured, but sets a maximum amount based on income.
The ruling means that states will be free to set their own minimum and maximum amount of health insurance for their residents, but states will have to comply with the Supreme of the United States.
In a statement, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) said the court ruled “with no doubt” that insurers could offer health insurance coverage to anyone who has a preexisting condition.
The association argued that the Supreme court decision is not limited to individuals.
“We’re pleased with the decision and look forward to reviewing the court next steps,” said NARIC president and CEO Paul Miller.
The insurers argue that they will be able to offer insurance in states that already have a mandate and are allowed to sell the same coverage in those states.
The Supreme Court in February ordered a nationwide review of the mandate, arguing that states can set their minimum amount for health insurance and set a maximum.
The justices rejected that argument, but said that states could set a higher minimum.
In February, the justices ruled 5-4 that a state could impose a “high” threshold to ensure that no one would be denied coverage based on pre-condition conditions.
The issue arose in Arizona, where the state’s health department had proposed a requirement to cover maternity coverage for anyone with pre -existing conditions.
The state argued that it would provide coverage to any qualified person regardless of income, but the court disagreed.
A few months later, Arizona’s state attorney general announced that it had filed an appeal of the decision.
The Arizona Health Department said it would appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court.
The Arizona lawsuit had prompted the Supreme Health Association, which represents insurers in Arizona and other states, to file a separate lawsuit challenging the state mandate.
The group argued that Arizona’s mandate was “unconstitutional.”
In January, the Supreme Courts of Georgia and Kentucky denied requests by Arizona and Arizona’s attorney general to have the Arizona and Kentucky Supreme Courts rule on the Arizona mandate.
Georgia’s Supreme Court said the state can set a reasonable threshold for the minimum amount that it must cover for residents.
Kentucky’s Supreme court said that it was “wrong” for the justices to take the state of Kentucky’s argument to the Supreme courts because it had not done so previously.
The case has been scheduled to go to the U.S. Supreme Court for a final ruling in the spring.