Health & Insurance

Woman sues state over untimely insurance enrollment

July 21, 2016
IL Staff
A lawsuit filed Thursday alleges the state ignored federal law requiring it to provide health insurance coverage within a reasonable time frame and must retroactively pay for an Elletsville woman’s medical bills.
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Feds sue Anthem, Cigna to block $48B merger

July 21, 2016
 Bloomberg News, Indianapolis Business Journal
U.S. antitrust enforcers on Thursday roundly rejected a pair of proposed deals that would consolidate the nation’s five biggest health insurers into just three.
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US preparing lawsuits against Anthem, Aetna deals, sources say

July 19, 2016
 Bloomberg News
U.S. antitrust officials are poised to file lawsuits to block Anthem Inc.’s takeover of rival health-insurer Cigna Corp. and Aetna Inc.’s deal to buy Humana Inc., according to a person familiar with the matter.
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Worker health, company headache

July 13, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
New EEOC regulations add to the milieu of rules governing company wellness programs.
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US health fraud stings net 301 people this year, most ever

June 22, 2016
 Bloomberg News
The U.S. charged 301 people this year in a series of medical fraud sting operations, the most ever, for allegedly running scams that bilked the government out of $900 million.
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Division of judgment in failed care facility financing affirmed

May 31, 2016
Dave Stafford
A former Indiana lawmaker and his business partners must pay a pro rata share of a deficiency judgment over defaulted financing for a rehabilitation care facility in Liberty, Indiana, the Court of Appeals affirmed Tuesday.
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Judge sides with House Republicans against health care law

May 12, 2016
 Associated Press
In a setback to President Barack Obama's health care law, a federal judge ruled Thursday that the administration is unconstitutionally spending federal money to fund the measure without approval from Congress.
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National medical-legal partnership conference convenes in Indianapolis

April 7, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
An estimated 400 attorneys, medical professionals and social workers from around the country have come to Indianapolis for the 2016 National Medical-Legal Partnership Summit.
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COA: Agreed judgment not appealable

April 7, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals said an agreed judgment is not appealable and reversed a Marion Superior Court decision that ruled in favor of a woman who prolonged judgment in the court so she wouldn’t have to pay $850 in medical bills and fees.
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Hospital cyberattack highlights health care vulnerabilities

March 30, 2016
 Associated Press
A cyberattack that paralyzed the hospital chain MedStar this week is serving as a fresh reminder of vulnerabilities that exist in systems that protect sensitive patient information.
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Southern District launches initiative to help pro se litigants

March 23, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
In response to a series of cases remanded from the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, the Southern District of Indiana is attempting to recruit more volunteer attorneys and, in what one observer called a “very progressive” approach, enlist medical professionals to offer expert testimony.
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COA: Firm has no private cause of action to gain back fees

March 15, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Indiana Court of Appeals reversed a decision that denied HealthPort’s motion for judgment against Garrison Law Firm LLC after it found Garrison did not have a private cause of action under Indiana law or Administrative Code.
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6 states sue Obama administration over Affordable Care Act

February 25, 2016
 Associated Press, IL Staff
Six states, including Indiana, filed a new lawsuit Wednesday against the Obama administration over the Affordable Care Act.
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Employee wellness programs not so voluntary anymore

January 15, 2016
 Bloomberg News
Dale Arnold, who worked for Wisconsin plastics maker Flambeau, chose not to take his work-sponsored health assessment and biometric screening. The company responded by pulling his insurance coverage.
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Troubled ex-Colts QB Schlichter sues NFL plan seeking benefits

January 12, 2016
Dave Stafford
One-time Indianapolis Colts quarterback Art Schlichter has sued the NFL Player Retirement Plan in an effort to receive benefits he claims are being wrongly denied. Schlichter alleges he’s suffering brain injury as he serves time in a federal prison.
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Obama vetoes bill to repeal signature health care law

January 8, 2016
 Associated Press
President Barack Obama has vetoed legislation to repeal his signature health care law.
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Anthem workers target high 401(k) fees

January 7, 2016
 Bloomberg News
Anthem Inc.’s retirement plan is accused in a lawsuit of forcing about 60,000 workers and retirees to pay excessive fees by having to invest in Vanguard Group funds billed as low-cost options.
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House vote to send health law repeal to Obama for first time

January 6, 2016
 Associated Press
After dozens of failed attempts to undo President Barack Obama's health care law, the GOP-led Congress will finally put a bill on the president's desk Wednesday striking at the heart of his signature legislative achievement.
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Column: Does Patchett v. Lee make patchwork of medical specials?

December 30, 2015
The Indiana Court of Appeals recently affirmed a ruling in Patchett v. Lee, 29A04-1501-CT-1 (Ind. Ct. App. Nov. 19, 2015), which held that government reimbursement rates are not an accurate reflection of the value of health care services, and thus are inadmissible as evidence of the reasonable value of medical services in personal-injury cases. The Patchett ruling signified a major shift in Indiana law on the determination of medical specials damages.
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Lawyers: NFL concussion deal excludes central brain injury

November 19, 2015
 Associated Press
Lawyers appealing the NFL's $1 billion plan to address concussion-linked injuries in former players asked a court Thursday to reject the settlement because it excludes what they call the signature brain disease of football.
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LLC denied royalties because of unenforceable contract

November 6, 2015
Jennifer Nelson
A company that sued seeking nearly $750 million in unpaid royalties for sales on medical devices using certain patents lost its appeal before the Indiana Court of Appeals because the contract is unenforceable.
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Preventable medical errors hit new high in Indiana

October 22, 2015
 Associated Press
New data released from the Indiana State Department of Health shows that the state has set another record for medical errors.
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Health law penalty on uninsured getting stiffer

October 19, 2015
 Associated Press
The math is harsh: The federal penalty for having no health insurance is set to jump to $695, and the Obama administration is being urged to highlight that cold fact to help drive its new pitch for health law sign-ups.
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Rogue nurse prompts call to revisit privacy rulings

October 2, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Noting technology is advancing faster that privacy law, an Indiana Court of Appeals judge is urging the Indiana Supreme Court to revisit precedent regarding invasion of privacy claims.
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Congress passes bill easing small business health law rules

October 2, 2015
 Associated Press
Congress approved bipartisan legislation Thursday aimed at preventing premium increases that some smaller businesses were expecting next year under President Barack Obama's health care law.
More
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  2. Mr. Levin says that the BMV engaged in misconduct--that the BMV (or, rather, someone in the BMV) knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged fees but did nothing to correct the situation. Such misconduct, whether engaged in by one individual or by a group, is called theft (defined as knowingly or intentionally exerting unauthorized control over the property of another person with the intent to deprive the other person of the property's value or use). Theft is a crime in Indiana (as it still is in most of the civilized world). One wonders, then, why there have been no criminal prosecutions of BMV officials for this theft? Government misconduct doesn't occur in a vacuum. An individual who works for or oversees a government agency is responsible for the misconduct. In this instance, somebody (or somebodies) with the BMV, at some time, knew Indiana motorists were being overcharged. What's more, this person (or these people), even after having the error of their ways pointed out to them, did nothing to fix the problem. Instead, the overcharges continued. Thus, the taxpayers of Indiana are also on the hook for the millions of dollars in attorneys fees (for both sides; the BMV didn't see fit to avail itself of the services of a lawyer employed by the state government) that had to be spent in order to finally convince the BMV that stealing money from Indiana motorists was a bad thing. Given that the BMV official(s) responsible for this crime continued their misconduct, covered it up, and never did anything until the agency reached an agreeable settlement, it seems the statute of limitations for prosecuting these folks has not yet run. I hope our Attorney General is paying attention to this fiasco and is seriously considering prosecution. Indiana, the state that works . . . for thieves.

  3. I'm glad that attorney Carl Hayes, who represented the BMV in this case, is able to say that his client "is pleased to have resolved the issue". Everyone makes mistakes, even bureaucratic behemoths like Indiana's BMV. So to some extent we need to be forgiving of such mistakes. But when those mistakes are going to cost Indiana taxpayers millions of dollars to rectify (because neither plaintiff's counsel nor Mr. Hayes gave freely of their services, and the BMV, being a state-funded agency, relies on taxpayer dollars to pay these attorneys their fees), the agency doesn't have a right to feel "pleased to have resolved the issue". One is left wondering why the BMV feels so pleased with this resolution? The magnitude of the agency's overcharges might suggest to some that, perhaps, these errors were more than mere oversight. Could this be why the agency is so "pleased" with this resolution? Will Indiana motorists ever be assured that the culture of incompetence (if not worse) that the BMV seems to have fostered is no longer the status quo? Or will even more "overcharges" and lawsuits result? It's fairly obvious who is really "pleased to have resolved the issue", and it's not Indiana's taxpayers who are on the hook for the legal fees generated in these cases.

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