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24 more school corps join IRS lawsuit on employer mandate

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Twenty-four additional school corporations have joined the lawsuit filed in October by the state of Indiana and 15 school corporations against the Internal Revenue Service challenging the tax penalties that could be imposed in 2015 under the “employer mandate” of the Affordable Care Act.

The lawsuit challenges new IRS regulations implemented under the new health care law and the authority of the federal government to impose the employer mandate on the state and Indiana public school corporations. The mandate declares that applicable large employers are required to offer full-time employees health insurance.

If large employers do not meet that requirement and workers then receive federal subsidies to get health insurance coverage, the employers may be subject to large financial penalties – up to $2,000 per employee for all full-time employees in the organization.

“It is unprecedented in the history of the United States that 39 public schools have joined together in a single lawsuit against the IRS. The significant participation of Indiana public schools in this lawsuit underscores the debilitating impact that the employer penalties are having upon public education,” said Jim Hamilton, an attorney at Bose McKinney & Evans LLP representing the public schools.  “All Indiana public school corporations provide comprehensive health insurance coverage to most of their employees. However, the practical reality is that most Indiana public school corporations do not have the financial resources to provide affordable, minimum value coverage to all employees who work in excess of 30 hours of service per week.”

Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller, who represents the state in the lawsuit, called the IRS tax penalties “draconian.”

“The objective of this case is to defend fundamental state authority to structure our government workforce to provide services; and individuals’ access to health insurance never has been the focus of the suit,” Zoeller said. "Our State should be protected as is constitutionally guaranteed from federal government overreach under our American system of federalism, and the participation of so many school corporations in the challenge reflects mutual concern that this principle has been undermined by the IRS’s actions.”

The amended lawsuit seeks an injunction blocking the IRS and other federal agencies from applying the regulation and penalties against the school corporations and the state as government employees. The plaintiffs also want the federal court to issue a declaratory judgment finding the IRS regulations as applied to the state government and schools unconstitutional and void under the 10th Amendment.

The school corporations in the lawsuit come from throughout the state and include the Charles A. Beard Memorial School Corp. in Knightstown; Salem Community Schools in Salem; and Mooresville Consolidated School Corp. in Mooresville.

The lawsuit is pending in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana. No response has been filed yet by the federal defendants, which include Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and the U.S. Department of Labor.

 

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  1. So that none are misinformed by my posting wihtout a non de plume here, please allow me to state that I am NOT an Indiana licensed attorney, although I am an Indiana resident approved to practice law and represent clients in Indiana's fed court of Nth Dist and before the 7th circuit. I remain licensed in KS, since 1996, no discipline. This must be clarified since the IN court records will reveal that I did sit for and pass the Indiana bar last February. Yet be not confused by the fact that I was so allowed to be tested .... I am not, to be clear in the service of my duty to be absolutely candid about this, I AM NOT a member of the Indiana bar, and might never be so licensed given my unrepented from errors of thought documented in this opinion, at fn2, which likely supports Mr Smith's initial post in this thread: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-7th-circuit/1592921.html

  2. When I served the State of Kansas as Deputy AG over Consumer Protection & Antitrust for four years, supervising 20 special agents and assistant attorneys general (back before the IBLE denied me the right to practice law in Indiana for not having the right stuff and pretty much crushed my legal career) we had a saying around the office: Resist the lure of the ring!!! It was a take off on Tolkiem, the idea that absolute power (I signed investigative subpoenas as a judge would in many other contexts, no need to show probable cause)could corrupt absolutely. We feared that we would overreach constitutional limits if not reminded, over and over, to be mindful to not do so. Our approach in so challenging one another was Madisonian, as the following quotes from the Father of our Constitution reveal: The essence of Government is power; and power, lodged as it must be in human hands, will ever be liable to abuse. We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties. I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations. Liberty may be endangered by the abuse of liberty, but also by the abuse of power. All men having power ought to be mistrusted. -- James Madison, Federalist Papers and other sources: http://www.constitution.org/jm/jm_quotes.htm RESIST THE LURE OF THE RING ALL YE WITH POLITICAL OR JUDICIAL POWER!

  3. My dear Mr Smith, I respect your opinions and much enjoy your posts here. We do differ on our view of the benefits and viability of the American Experiment in Ordered Liberty. While I do agree that it could be better, and that your points in criticism are well taken, Utopia does indeed mean nowhere. I think Madison, Jefferson, Adams and company got it about as good as it gets in a fallen post-Enlightenment social order. That said, a constitution only protects the citizens if it is followed. We currently have a bevy of public officials and judicial agents who believe that their subjectivism, their personal ideology, their elitist fears and concerns and cause celebs trump the constitutions of our forefathers. This is most troubling. More to follow in the next post on that subject.

  4. Yep I am not Bryan Brown. Bryan you appear to be a bigger believer in the Constitution than I am. Were I still a big believer then I might be using my real name like you. Personally, I am no longer a fan of secularism. I favor the confessional state. In religious mattes, it seems to me that social diversity is chaos and conflict, while uniformity is order and peace.... secularism has been imposed by America on other nations now by force and that has not exactly worked out very well.... I think the American historical experiment with disestablishmentarianism is withering on the vine before our eyes..... Since I do not know if that is OK for an officially licensed lawyer to say, I keep the nom de plume.

  5. I am compelled to announce that I am not posting under any Smith monikers here. That said, the post below does have a certain ring to it that sounds familiar to me: http://www.catholicnewworld.com/cnwonline/2014/0907/cardinal.aspx

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