Affordable Care Act

Nov 26, 2013 4:59 PM by NBC News

More legal hurdles for Affordable Care

The Affordable Care Act - the federal health law that requires most companies to provide insurance - has hit another snag - and it has nothing to do with the website.

The U.S. Supreme Court meets behind closed doors today to decide whether to hear several cases challenging the health law. Those companies argue it's illegal to force them to provide health insurance that covers birth control.

Hobby Lobby is one of some 40 companies asking the Supreme Court to decide if the employer mandate violates their constitutional right to religious freedom.

The issue at stake is whether it is legal to require companies to cover birth control if the company's owners have a religious objection and whether is it legal to fine those companies if they don't.

One case also asks the court if it's legal to require individual employees to pay a monthly premium that covers contraceptives if they object.

The case could hinge on science. Physicians groups argue life begins at implantation - so contraceptives that prevent fertilization do not violate religious rights.

It's the latest twist in the rollout of the affordable care act. "This website is going to get fixed!" President Barack Obama

President Obama told supporters in San Francisco last night coverage will be available.

We're now four days from his administration's self-imposed deadline to fix healthcare.gov

As for this latest court challenge, the Justices could announce as early as today whether they'll hear those cases.

If they so, we could see arguments here next spring and a decision as late as June.

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