Blue Cross gets $22M hospital bill in Bibb County lawsuit
9:44 pm, March 5th, 2013
A Macon Telegraph story is making its way from Macon.com to health care sites around the Internet: The Medical Center of Central Georgia has filed suit against Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia, contending that the insurance company has underpaid the hospital by more than $22 million.
The alleged underpayments include $1,191,254 in reimbursements for cardiac catheterization procedures from 2011. Another $2,240,369 is claimed for healthy baby deliveries.
The lawsuit was filed in Bibb County Superior Court. The Telegraph reports that the hospital contends that the insurance company breached agreements. The suit stems from a 2010 audit.
Insurer-bad faith bill advances
10:37 am, February 28th, 2013
A bill that would give insurers at least 30 days to respond to a settlement before a bad faith claim could be brought against them has passed one chamber of the Georgia General Assembly.
State representatives approved House Bill 336 on Wednesday in a 163-0 vote.
HB 336 pertains only to torts claiming personal injury, bodily injury or death arising from the use of a motor vehicle. It also is limited to regulating offers of settlement submitted prior to the filing of a lawsuit.
The bill is the product of negotiations among a secret group of plaintiffs’ and insurance defense lawyers convened by the speaker of the House earlier this year. Its lead sponsor is Rep. Jay Powell, R-Camilla, a general practice lawyer and former mayor.
HB 336 also would require that all settlement offers contain specific information, such as the amount of payment and release details, and would allow insurers to request clarification on the facts of the case without that request constituting a counteroffer.
The Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, which fought legislation last session that sought to regulate bad faith claims and Holt demands, said it accepts HB 336. The Georgia Chamber of Commerce says it supports codifying and extending the time for response to demand letters and clarifying who the third party insurer must pay.
Bill limiting Holt demands clears committee
4:22 pm, February 21st, 2013
The House Judiciary Committee today approved a bill regulating Holt demands and bad faith claims in personal injury and wrongful death cases related to motor vehicles.
House Bill 336 would give insurers at least 30 days to respond to a settlement offer before a bad faith claim could be brought against them. It would require that all settlement offers contain the specific time period in which the offers must be accepted, the amount of payment, the parties the claimants would release, the type of release and the claims to be released.
The bill also would allow insurers to request clarification on the facts of the case, including term limits, liens, subrogation and standing to release claims, and medical bills and records, without the insurers’ requests constituting a counteroffer.
Besides being limited only to motor vehicle cases, the bill is limited to regulating offers of settlement submitted prior to the filing of a lawsuit.
HB 336, sponsored by Rep. Jay Powell, R-Camilla, is the result of negotiations among a secret group of lawyers from both plaintiffs’ and insurance defense practices commissioned before the session started in January by the speaker of the House.
The Georgia Legislature considered similar legislation last session, including House Bill 1175, which would have allowed an insurer 60 days to respond to a settlement offer and required offers to include copies of medical records and billing statements.
Judiciary Committee approval means HB 336 will go to the House Rules Committee, which will decide when it comes up for a vote by the full chamber.