Yellow Pages

Hennepin County Jury Returns Excess Verdict Against American Family Insured
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Written by TAC Staff: Yellow Pages   
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 23:30
EAGAN, MN, January 26, 2013 After being told to "get over it" by an American Family adjuster, a 22-year old woman, after nearly drowning in a car crash, was awarded almost $284,000 by a Hennepin County jury. On Wednesday, January 16, 2013, after a 2 day trial, a Hennepin County (Minnesota) jury returned an excess verdict in favor of a 22-year old passenger who was injured in a collision in late March 2010.
The 22-year old was a passenger in a vehicle driven by Champale Carter on March 28, 2010. The young women were traveling to Willmar to visit friends. On the way there, after dark, the driver went through a t-intersection and into a holding pond. The car hit the water, the front windshield broke and water began rushing in. The young women escaped the vehicle. When they jumped from the car into the water, they realized that the cold water was over her heads. The two young women swam to shore.
The passenger suffered injuries to her neck and back in the collision. More devastating, however, was the emotional injuries she sustained. Following the collision, the 22-year old passenger experienced nightmares 2 to 3 nights per week. She received medical care from a chiropractor, neurologist and a psychologist.
The passenger's attorney, Thomas Bennerotte of the Eagan based law firm of Bennerotte & Associates, PA, pursued the driver's insurance carrier, American Family, in an effort to attempt resolution of the case. American Family offered a small sum of money for what they deemed soft tissue injuries. With respect to the emotional aspects of the passenger's case, the American Family adjuster suggested Mr. Bennerotte tell his client to "get over it." After the verdict, Mr. Bennerotte said his client and him both remembered that May 2011 conversation with the American Family adjuster like it was yesterday. Bennerotte said, "I did not react to the insensitive comment like I would have liked to. I simply told the adjuster that the comment was foolish but that I would not get mad. I did 'promise' him, however, that my client and I would get even." A lawsuit was commenced in response to the low-ball offer.

"Get even" is exactly what Bennerotte and his client did. The driver did not admit fault or offer an apology. "We asked the jury to do what the negligent driver did not - make things right." The Hennepin County jury returned a verdict in favor of the passenger for almost $284,000, which included over $220,000 for past and future pain, suffering, embarrassment and emotional distress. The verdict is well over the American Family insured's $100,000 policy limit. When asked about the verdict, Bennerotte smiled and said, "As it turns out, American Family will be the ones getting over it."
While the result was not Bennerotte's largest, he commented that, "it was one of the most satisfying."

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit to Block Florida PIP Reform
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Written by TAC Staff: Yellow Pages   
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 23:27
TALLAHASSEE, FL, The R Street Institute, a free-market think tank headquartered in Washington, D.C., has issued a press release praising the order by Judge Richard Lazzara of the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida dismissing a lawsuit by chiropractors, acupuncturists, and massage therapists that sought to block implementation of reforms passed last year to Florida’s personal injury protection auto insurance system. 
In his decision, Lazzara found no basis for the plaintiffs’ claims that, because the law constrains PIP coverage for chiropractors and proscribes it altogether for massage therapists and acupuncturists, they were denied due process and equal protection under the Fifth and 14th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. 
“What plaintiffs fail to grasp is that although they do have a state-created property interest in their professional licenses, that interest is only subject to procedural due process protection and not substantive due process protection,” Lazzara wrote, adding that the practitioners’ procedural due process rights are covered by the legislative process that passed the law. 
Lazzara added that the statutory restrictions in the PIP reform law do not appear to impinge on the plaintiffs’ liberties to follow their chosen professions. In a press release, R Street Florida Director Christian R. Cámara called the decision a victory for Florida consumers. 
“Governor Scott and the Florida Legislature heard the calls from Florida consumers about their runaway auto insurance costs and took action to cut out the fraud and unscrupulous claims that were driving up rates,” Cámara said in the release. 

“The federal court did the right thing in upholding those cost-saving, pro-consumer reforms by throwing out this lawsuit. It is unfortunate that opponents of reform who couldn't get their way in the Capitol last year insist on using the courts to legislate on their behalf.”
Lazzara’s decision allowed the plaintiffs to proceed with a separate suit in Florida state court, which he said was in a better position to judge unique claims made under Florida constitutional law. That suit was filed Jan. 9 in Tallahassee in the 2nd Judicial Circuit Court of Florida.

Source: Sunshine State News
Lawsuit Attacks Colorado D.C. Ability to Administer Drugs
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Written by TAC Staff: Yellow Pages   
Tuesday, 26 February 2013 23:22
Colorado Springs, CO, The Colorado Medical Society filed a lawsuit Monday to halt a rule that would allow chiropractors to administer drugs.
The rule was created by the Chiropractic Board of Examiners and would authorize practitioners to administer drugs topically, orally, by inhalation and injection, after completing 24 hours of study and a certification exam. The board certifies doctors of chiropractic and changed the rule in November. Without action, it will go into effect Jan. 14.
Colorado Attorney General John Suthers said the changes “exceed the legislative scope of the authority” granted to the board of examiners. And records at the AG’s office show most chiropractors oppose the rule.
“The enactment of the rule exceeds the authority of chiropractors as defined in the Chiropractors Practice Act and intrudes on the practice of medicine by professionals licensed under the Medical Practice Act,” said Susan Koontz, general counsel and senior director of government relations for the Colorado Medical Society.
“Authorizing chiropractors to administer drugs and perform injections threatens irreparable injury to the public welfare and the safety of the patients the members of the Colorado Medical Society serve to protect,” said John Conklin of Martin Conklin, counsel for CMS.
Also opposing the new rule in the lawsuit: Colorado Society of Osteopathic Medicine, Weld County Medical Society, an attorney for several state medical societies, including Creek Valley Medical Society, Aurora-Adams County Medical Society, Denver Medical Society, Mesa County Medical Society, Colorado Radiological Society, Colorado Chapter of American College of Emergency Physicians, Colorado Orthopaedic Society, Colorado Society of Anesthesiologists, Boulder County Medical Society and Larimer County Medical Society.

Source:  Colorado Springs Business Journal
Chiropractor to Prison for Fraud
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Written by TAC Staff: Yellow Pages   
Friday, 25 January 2013 04:44
ALGONQUIN, IL– A chiropractor who partly owned six clinics, including one in Algonquin, has been sentenced to 6½ years in federal prison for health care fraud.
Bradley Mattson, 51, of Lake Forest pleaded guilty in September, admitting to a 10-year scheme to defraud Blue Cross Blue Shield.
Between 1999 and 2009, Mattson co-owned the clinics, which included Algonquin Physical Medicine.
According to prosecutors, Mattson submitted nearly $5.9 million for medically unnecessary tests or physical therapy services that were not provided. He collected almost $2.1 million in reimbursements, which he was ordered to repay.
U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman said Mattson showed “no sensitivity to his patients” and “put many of them through unnecessary stress.”
“Frauds like this all across the country are jacking up the prices of insurance,” Guzman said.
In 2008, an undercover FBI agent visited one of the clinics for treatment of a lower back strain. Despite diagnoses by the clinic’s medical doctor and physical therapist that the agent had a pulled muscle, Mattson diagnosed him with a pinched nerve and put him on a treatment plan that began with daily visits for two weeks.
The other owners of the clinics, Steven Paul, 41, and Neelesh Patel, 37, of Glenview, face charges, as well. Paul is awaiting sentencing after pleading guilty to health care fraud. Charges against Patel are pending.

Source:  Northwest Herald
Chiropractor Indicted in Alleged Insurance Fraud Scheme
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Written by TAC Staff: Yellow Pages   
Friday, 25 January 2013 04:39
aroundtheworldHOUSTON, TX—Bryan chiropractor Chase Lindsey, 44, and four other residents are named in a 31-count indictment unsealed Tuesday that charges conspiracy and mail fraud in an alleged scheme to defraud auto insurance companies of more than $3 million, U.S. Attorney Kenneth Magidson said.

The indictment, handed up on Nov. 28, names Lindsey, who’s part owner of Lindsey Chiropractic Care in Bryan; Marion Young, 52; Edward Graham, 46; Brittany Jessie, 23, and Earlie Dickerson, 50, who was office manager of the Bryan office of Sanjoh & Associates Law Firm and part-owner along with Young, Graham and Jessie of several other chiropractic clinics in Bryan.

Dickerson and Jessie appeared Tuesday before a U.S. magistrate in Waco and Lindsey and Young appeared before a federal magistrate in Houston.
Lindsey was freed after posting $75,000 bond and Young was ordered to remain in custody pending a detention hearing Wednesday morning.
Graham is expected to appear Wednesday before the magistrate in Houston.

The indictment alleges that Dickerson used his position at the law firm to recruit victims of traffic accidents as clients and then sent them to the clinics he, Young, Graham and Jessie owned or to Lindsey’s clinic.
The indictment says Lindsey, who served as the chiropractor at all four of the clinics, would recommend medically unnecessary therapeutic treatments for the clients whom Dickerson sent in return for about $2,000 a month, which was usually in paid cash.
Then, the indictment says, Lindsey allowed fraudulent bills under his name from the clinics to be submitted by the law firm to various auto insurance companies, which paid the law firm and its clients more than $1.5 million based on the fraudulent claims.
The alleged scheme ran from February 2007 through December 2009, prosecutors said.


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