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COA: agency's claim for Medicaid reimbursement allowed

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has found that a trial court erred in concluding that the Family and Social Services Administration’s preferred claim for reimbursement of Medicaid benefits against an estate was not timely filed.

In State of Indiana ex rel. Family and Social Services Administration v. Estate of Phillip Roy, No. 33A04-1105-ES-246, the FSSA filed a notice of lien in April 2009 against the estate of Phillip Roy after he died in November 2008 for nearly $40,000 in Medicaid expenses incurred by Roy during his lifetime. The estate moved to dismiss the petition. The trial court disallowed the lien because it was invalid and found that FSSA’s claim to recover the benefits was time-barred by Indiana Code 29-1-14-1(d) because it was filed more than nine months after Roy died.

The trial court focused on the part of the statute that says all claims barrable under subsection (a) would be barred if not filed within nine months. But the judge disregarded the language of subsection (a) that says the time limitations apply to all claims filed “other than … claims of the United States, the state, or a subdivision of the state …” The FSSA is a subdivision of the state, the judges found.

Judges James Kirsch and Cale Bradford also rejected the argument by the estate that because an estate wasn’t opened within five months, the estate representatives are prevented from selling Roy’s real estate and using the proceeds or a portion of it to pay FSSA’s claim based on I.C. 29-1-7-15.1(b). The judges remanded with instructions.

Judge Michael Barnes disagreed with his colleagues that subsection 15.1(b) doesn’t preclude the sale of Roy’s real property to pay a debt owed to FSSA.

“To give effect to Subsection 15.1(b), I believe that because FSSA is no longer claiming that it has a valid lien upon Roy’s real property and because his estate was not opened within five months of death, the property cannot be sold to pay FSSA’s claim,” he wrote.

 

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  1. Well, maybe it's because they are unelected, and, they have a tendency to strike down laws by elected officials from all over the country. When you have been taught that "Democracy" is something almost sacred, then, you will have a tendency to frown on such imperious conduct. Lawyers get acculturated in law school into thinking that this is the very essence of high minded government, but to people who are more heavily than King George ever did, they may not like it. Thanks for the information.

  2. I pd for a bankruptcy years ago with Mr Stiles and just this week received a garnishment from my pay! He never filed it even though he told me he would! Don't let this guy practice law ever again!!!

  3. Excellent initiative on the part of the AG. Thankfully someone takes action against predators taking advantage of people who have already been through the wringer. Well done!

  4. Conour will never turn these funds over to his defrauded clients. He tearfully told the court, and his daughters dutifully pledged in interviews, that his first priority is to repay every dime of the money he stole from his clients. Judge Young bought it, much to the chagrin of Conour’s victims. Why would Conour need the $2,262 anyway? Taxpayers are now supporting him, paying for his housing, utilities, food, healthcare, and clothing. If Conour puts the money anywhere but in the restitution fund, he’s proved, once again, what a con artist he continues to be and that he has never had any intention of repaying his clients. Judge Young will be proven wrong... again; Conour has no remorse and the Judge is one of the many conned.

  5. Pass Legislation to require guilty defendants to pay for the costs of lab work, etc as part of court costs...

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