JW Files Suit on behalf of Kawa Orthodontics against Treasury & IRS to Overturn Delay of Obamacare Employer Mandate
Florida Lawsuit Argues Mandate Delay Exceeds Obama Administration’s Statutory Authority and is Arbitrary, Capricious, Contrary to Law, and Otherwise Unlawful.
Seeks an Injunction Prohibiting Employer Mandate Delay
(Washington, DC) – Judicial Watch announced today that it has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Dr. Larry Kawa of Kawa Orthodontics against the U.S. Department of Treasury, Secretary of Treasury Jack Lew, the Internal Revenue Service and IRS Acting Director Daniel Werfel challenging the Obama administration’s decision to delay the enactment of the so-called “employer mandate” provision of the Affordable Healthcare Act, also known as Obamacare (Kawa Orthodontics, LLP vs. Jack Lew, et al., (No. 9:13-cv-80990)).
The lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida on behalf of Boca Raton based employer Kawa Orthodontics LLP, argues that the delay of the employer mandate “exceeded [the Obama administration’s] statutory authority, is arbitrary, capricious, and contrary to law, and is otherwise unlawful.”
The employer mandate, which subjects certain large employers to tax penalties if they do not offer “affordable,” “minimum essential” health insurance coverage to their employees, is “one of the pillars” of Obamacare. By law, the mandate was required to take effect January 1, 2014. On July 2, 2013, however, the Obama administration officially postponed the mandate, causing Kawa Orthodontics to lose the value of its substantial efforts to prepare for the controversial provision taking effect beginning next year:
“[Kawa Orthodontics] expended substantial time and resources, including money spent on legal fees and other costs, in preparation for the ‘employer mandate’ taking effect on January 1, 2014….[The company] would not have expended its time and resources and incurred these anticipatory costs in 2013 if the mandate had not been scheduled to take effect until 2015, but instead would have spent its time, resources, and money on other priorities.”
Kawa Orthodontics is owned by orthodontist Larry Kawa, a longtime Florida resident and hardworking American community business leader. It employs more than 70 full-time employees in Florida.
The complaint alleges that the decision to delay the employer mandate violates the Administrative Procedure Act, which forbids “agency action” that exceeds an agency’s statutory authority, is arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law. The complaint asks the court to enter a judgment declaring the delay to be unlawful and an injunction prohibiting the delay.
“We obviously object to the employer mandate and the entire Obamacare law, but we understand that, under the U.S. Constitution, the law can only be changed by legislation passed by Congress and signed by the president. President Obama would delay the damage of his health care scheme until after the 2014 congressional elections. But politics do not trump the Constitution or the rule of law,” stated Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “And to paraphrase Ulysses S. Grant, the best way to ensure the repeal of a bad law is to enforce it vigorously.”
“I am tired of Washington, DC, picking winners and losers and giving preferential treatment to those inside the Beltway. This is just more of DC career politicians protecting their own,” said Dr. Larry Kawa of Kawa Orthodontics.
According to the Obama White House’s website, at least 200,000 employers in the U.S. employ more than 50 employees and will be impacted by the decision to delay the employer mandate.
Watch the press conference below: