Insurer sues feds over ObamaCare losses

Insurer sues feds over ObamaCare losses

Highmark Inc. is suing the federal government over about $220 million it claims it is owed under ObamaCare.

The insurer filed a lawsuit Tuesday arguing the Obama administration has yet to pay up the money that is intended to help insurers make up for losses under the law.  

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Highmark is the second high-profile insurer to fight back in court against the administration’s risk-corridor program, a pool of money intended to help cushion insurers against the volatility of the new healthcare marketplace.  

The administration announced last fall it would not pay insurers back the full amount of money owed under that risk-corridor program in 2014, the first year it went into effect.

Insurers were given only 12.6 percent of the money they claimed in 2014 because losses had been deeper than expected across the marketplace.

That decision came partly because of Republicans in Congress, who inserted a policy rider into a 1,603-page spending bill passed at the end of 2014.

Under the provision, which is still in effect, the Department of Health and Human Services can no longer tap other accounts, such as its overall appropriations or its Medicare funding, to fund the risk corridors program.