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U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Photo: Michael A. Scarcella) Health insurers have been suing the federal government in an effort to collect billions of dollars that were offered to them through the Affordable Care Act risk corridors health insurance subsidy program.(Photo: Michael A. Scarcella)

A federal appeals court panel today issued a 2-1 ruling that could cost some health insurers billions of dollars in Affordable Care Act subsidy program payments, and could push all federal vendors to determine whether the payment arrangements they have with the federal government are actually contracts.

A three-judge panel at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued the ruling on Moda Health Plan Inc. v. the United States (Case Number 2017-1994). The panel also issued a related ruling, on Land of Lincoln Mutual Health Insurance Company v. United States, that echoes the effects of the Moda Health ruling.

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