Habitual Non-filer Gets Jail Time
WASHINGTON: A U.S. district court in Tacoma recently sentenced a chiropractor in Puyallup to three months in prison and seven months in a halfway house for failing to file federal income tax returns, reported the U.S. attorney’s office.
U.S. District Judge Benjamin H. Settle also ordered Kevin Lynn Terry, 45, to file all delinquent tax returns and to pay all remaining taxes due.
Terry allegedly used trusts to conceal his chiropractic income and personal assets, including his home, during the years 1996 and 1997. The IRS audited those two years and found the trusts to be shams. Terry later agreed to the IRS’ tax assessments for those years.
Beginning in 1998, he changed tactics and began to willfully evade the IRS’ ability to assess and collect tax for the years 1999 through 2001. This included not filing individual Form 1040 returns.
He also formed a corporation in 1998, named Puyallup Chiropractic Clinic Inc., with himself as president, for which he did not file Corporate 1120 tax returns.
During the subject years of 1999 through 2001, Terry evaded tax of about $70,000.
Before criminal charges were brought, he filed tax returns for the subject years and paid the taxes due.
At sentencing, U.S. District Court Judge Benjamin Settle said, "The term tax protestor is merely a polite way of saying tax cheater." The judge stated further, "It’s not enough to just pay when you are caught. If being caught results only in having to pay the tax, our system would collapse."
Kenneth J. Hines, the IRS special agent in charge of the Pacific Northwest, said, "During the last three years, over 800 non-filers have learned a hard lesson: that cheating the American public can lead to their prosecution."
Former Chiropractor Sentenced for Insurance Fraud
PENNSYLVANIA: A former Mercer County chiropractor will spend three years in prison for defrauding an insurance company.
Thirty-eight-year-old Brent J. Detelich, of Clearwater, FL, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh in mid-April. A jury convicted him of health care and mail fraud in March 2007.
Prosecutors say Detelich submitted fraudulent claims to Highmark Blue Cross/Blue Shield for services not rendered. He then split the payments from those claims with some patients.
Detelich did business as Detelich Chiropractic, and Advanced Medical and Holistic of Hermitage, about 60 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.
He must also pay $91,025 in restitution to Highmark. And he’ll be on supervised release for two years after his release from prison.
Chiropractic PIP Benefits Denied Based on Exam by Orthopedic Surgeon
MASSACHUSETTS: An insurance company could terminate a plaintiff’s personal injury protection benefits for chiropractic treatment based on an independent medical examination by an orthopedic surgeon, the Supreme Judicial Court has ruled.
The plaintiff—who had been injured in a car crash caused by a policyholder of the defendant insurance company—argued that, under the "same profession requirement" in G.L.c. 90, Sect. 34M, the insurer’s determination to cease paying PIP benefits had to be made by a doctor licensed under the same specialty as the treating or billing physician.
But the SJC disagreed, reversing a Superior Court judgment for the plaintiff.
"Relying on the language of 34M...[the insurer] contends that the same profession requirement only applies ‘when a refusal to pay a bill for medical service’ is based solely on a medical review of the bill or of the medical services underlying the bill," wrote Justice Roderick L. Ireland for the court. "We agree."
Because the insurer’s refusal to pay "was based on an IME rather than a medical review of the bill or the medical services underlying the bill, we conclude that the plain language of the statute makes the same profession requirement inapplicable," he continued.
The 11-page decision is Boone v. Commerce Insurance Co., Lawyers Weekly No. 10-079-08.
MN Pets Could Get New Line of Care: Chiropractors
MINNESOTA: An attention-getting proposal to open the door to chiropractic care for animals in Minnesota appears headed for approval.
The Minnesota House has backed a compromise plan that has also gained the support of the state Senate. It would allow chiropractors to work on animals if they receive training and have received a referral from a veterinarian.
The language is in a broader policy bill that will next go before a House-Senate conference committee. Chiropractors and veterinarians were at odds over an initial bill.
Veterinarians had expressed concern that chiropractors were not fully trained to spot all types of injuries on an animal. One provision requires chiropractors to post a sign notifying customers that they treat animals.
Minnesota Public Radio News, http://www.mpr.org