The Affordable Care Act crossed another hurdle this month when an appeals court denied a challenge from a doctor and one of his patients, saying they lacked standing.

While the decision certainly was not the first victory for the Act, Wednesday’s ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit marked the first time that a related case was completely dismissed.

It’s a brave — and confusing — new world, and the impact of the political debate on individuals and on client planning will go on and on.

CPE Link instructor William Murphy is very aware of this. He points out that CPAs need to be on top of the new exclusions and restrictions that will affect the insurance and health-care industries, and provisions are taking effect in 2011 through 2014 — and beyond.

Paying for health care “will change drastically in the future,” Murphy points out, and it will most definitely “impact the client’s bottom line.”

Murphy is an expert in tax consulting and financial planning who works with corporations, news and publishing organizations, and professional practices in Indiana. He’s well equipped to talk about the legal ramifications of the Act, having appeared as an expert witness in court and as a lecturer on valuation and tax issues for professional groups across the country.

Murphy — who is also a contributing expert to FOX News, CNBC and other media — warns that decisions will have to be made well in advance of the key implementation year of 2014.

In short, there’s not a moment to lose in helping clients plan for the changes ahead.