Illinois Court Approves Certification of Class in Travelers PPO Class Action Case

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An Illinois circuit court has certified a class action case against Travelers Casualty and surety Company and The Travelers Indemnity Company by Illinois medical providers who accuse the company of questionable practices to reduce medical bills and increase profits.

An Illinois circuit court has certified a class action case against Travelers Casualty and Surety Company and The Travelers Indemnity Company by Illinois medical providers who accuse the company of questionable practices to reduce medical bills and increase profits.

The case is pending in the Third Judicial Circuit, Cause No. 05-L-151, Madison County, Illinois. According to the lawsuit on behalf of medical providers, Travelers has engaged in a silent Preferred Provider Organization scheme. In a PPO, insurance companies provide financial incentives to encourage patients to seek treatment from the preferred or in-network providers. Financial incentives include, for example, reduced co-payments or greater benefit coverage for seeking treatment from preferred or in-network providers. A "silent PPO" occurs when an insurance company breaches its obligation to refer patients to medical providers but still take the discounts the medical providers' bills. As a result, the medical provider loses revenues without gaining patients, receiving nothing in exchange for the reduced bills.

Brad Lakin of The Lakin Firm, said, "Over the past decade, insurance companies have squeezed medical providers as a means to increase profits. Whether called re-pricing or cost containment, insurance companies have used questionable tactics to reduce medical bills by all means possible, creating substantial losses for medical providers and record profits for the insurance companies."

The trial court certified the following class: "All healthcare providers in Illinois whose reimbursement for medical services relating to the treatment of an Illinois workers compensation claimant was reduced by Travelers pursuant to a First Health PPO discount from March 28, 1996 through October 14, 2008."

The Court appointed Coy Chiropractic Health Center, P.C., Richard coy, D.C. and Frank C. Bemis & Associates d/b/a Bemis Chiropractic as class representatives and The Lakin Law Firm, P.C. and Campbell & McGrady as class counsel. The certification of a class is an important step in moving a class action case forward.

The Lakin Law Firm, P.C. regularly represents medical providers and consumers in class action litigation. Those seeking more information may contact the firm at MedicalBillReview @ lakinlaw.com (medical providers) or classaction @ lakinlaw.com (consumers).

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Brad Lakin

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