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No Sudden Moves Despite Trump Executive Order to Dismantle ACA

Earlier today, on October 12, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order asking his administration to begin dismantling many key provisions in the Affordable Care Act through the rulemaking process. Most significantly, the order tasks the Department of Labor, the Treasury Department, and the Department of Health and Human Services to expand access to and loosen restrictions on both association health care plans (which let small employers group together to form a larger pool and avoid state coverage requirements) and short-term plans (which are for individuals seeking to be covered for up to three months and are not subject to most of the ACA’s regulations). This is a departure from the ACA, which states that association plans have to follow small employer coverage requirements and short-term plans are restricted to 90 days with limited options for renewal. Lindsay McLaughlin, an attorney in the health care practice of Nilan Johnson Lewis and former Minnesota insurance regulator, says that it would be premature for employers or individuals to change any of their health care decisions based on this executive order. “It should be clear that this order has not overturned, repealed or replaced any part of the Affordable Care Act and its requirements. It will take time for the administration to work through the rulemaking process and determine how to implement Trump’s directives.” To speak with Lindsay McLaughlin about this or related issues, contact her at 612.305.7739 or

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