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Thursday, June 21, 2012

HORIZON BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD OF NEW JERSEY VS. THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY, ET AL. A-2232-09T3


HORIZON BLUE CROSS BLUE SHIELD OF NEW JERSEY VS. THE
STATE OF NEW JERSEY, ET AL.
 A-2232-09T3

In this appeal, we conclude that the Premium Tax Cap
Statute, N.J.S.A. 54:18A-6, as amended by Assembly Bill A4401
(A4401), L. 2005, c. 128, is not unconstitutional as a denial of
due process or equal protection, a bill of attainder, or special
legislation.  By its terms, A4401 eliminated the tax cap on
premiums received by health service corporations (HSCs) when at
all relevant times, plaintiff Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of
New Jersey was the only HSC in New Jersey.  Among its other
claims, plaintiff charged that it was singled out for
retaliation after it refused to convert to for-profit status.  

  We determine that A4401 was rationally related to the
legislative goals of raising revenue to reduce a budget deficit
as well as to eliminate a loophole in the tax law whereby HSCs
had a lower effective tax rate than other health insurance
carriers.  We further conclude that plaintiff's claim of
retaliation is likewise without merit. 
 The Tax Court opinion is reported at 25 N.J. Tax 290 (Tax
Ct. 2009). 03-07-12