Last updated on: 10/24/2012 | Author:

Does Obamacare Eliminate Lifetime or Annual Limits on Insurance Coverage? – YES

General Reference (not clearly pro or con)

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Section 2711, “No Lifetime or Annual Limits,” page 13, signed into law on Mar. 23, 2010, available at the Library of Congress website, states:

“(1) IN GENERAL.—A group health plan and a health insurance issuer offering group or individual health insurance coverage may not establish—

(A) lifetime limits on the dollar value of benefits for any participant or beneficiary; or

(2) unreasonable annual limits (within the meaning of section 223 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986) on the dollar value of benefits for any participant or beneficiary.”

Mar. 23, 2010 - Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (HR 3590)

PRO (yes)


Health Reform in Minnesota stated the following in a Nov. 14, 2011 posting “Restrictions on Annual and Lifetime Limits,” available at

“Health reform eliminates lifetime dollar maximums on most health plan benefits and places restrictions on annual dollar limits. The changes to annual limits are phased in over several years…

No annual dollar limits are allowed on most covered benefits effective January 1, 2014.

The requirement to eliminate lifetime dollar limits applies to all plans. The annual limit restrictions apply to employer-based health plans, and to individual health insurance plans issued after March 23, 2010. Some plans are eligible for a waiver from the rules concerning annual dollar limits. To get the waiver, plans must show that increasing their annual limit would require a significant increase in premiums or decreased access to coverage.”


The White House stated the following in its Mar. 16, 2012 article “Health Care & You,” available at its website:

“End to Limits on Care: In the past, some people with cancer or other chronic illnesses ran out of insurance coverage because their health care expenses reached a dollar limit imposed by their insurance company. Under the health care law, insurers can no longer impose lifetime dollar limits on essential health benefits and annual limits are being phased out by 2014. More than 105 million Americans no longer have lifetime limits thanks to the new law.”

CON (no)


[Editor’s Note: Based upon a neutral reading of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and bi-partisan third party analysis, this question seems to have a clear and obvious Con (no) answer, and has therefore presented the responses in a single column with no opposing perspective.]