Medical Provider Class Action Certified against Safeco

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An Illinois Circuit Court certified a class action case against Safeco Insurance Company of America and Safeco Insurance Company of Illinois. The case covers medical providers and policyholders who accuse the company of implementing a third-party biased computer auditing program to reduce payouts under the medical payments coverage of property and casualty insurance.

Unfortunately, Safeco and other carriers in the industry use computer programs to cut legitimate bills of medical providers which leads to substantial financial losses for medical providers and out of pocket expenses for Safeco's own policyholders. In return, the insurance company profits

An Illinois Circuit Court certified a class action case against Safeco Insurance Company of America and Safeco Insurance Company of Illinois. The case covers medical providers and policyholders who accuse the company of implementing a third-party biased computer auditing program to reduce payouts under the medical payments coverage of property and casualty insurance.

The case is pending in the Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois (Cause No. 05-L-152). The Court certified the following class:

All persons insured by Safeco property and casualty insurance companies in the states of Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and West Virginia (and their assignee medical providers), who

(a) during the period from January 1, 1997 to the date of this Order, submitted one or more claims for payment of medical expenses pursuant to an automobile policy's medical payments coverage;

(b) had their claim(s) adjusted and reviewed by computer bill review software incorporating Ingenix "MDR modules;" and

(c) received or were tendered payment in an amount less than the submitted medical expenses due to charges purportedly exceeding the usual, customary or reasonable amount, based on the Ingenix "MDR modules."

Jonathan Piper, Attorney for LakinChapman, LLC, said, "This is the first step to successfully litigating this case. This lawsuit challenges Safeco's targeting of medical providers, and their legitimate billing practices, by utilizing a computer program that unilaterally and improperly reduces bills to a pre-determined arbitrary cap that Safeco selects."

LakinChapman, LLC regularly represents medical providers and consumers in class action litigation. "Unfortunately, Safeco and other carriers in the industry use computer programs to cut legitimate bills of medical providers which leads to substantial financial losses for medical providers and out of pocket expenses for Safeco's own policyholders. In return, the insurance company profits," said Brad Lakin, Managing Partner of LakinChapman, LLC. The firm is pursuing similar cases against other insurance companies in the industry. LakinChapman, LLC regularly represents medical providers and consumers in class action litigation.

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Brad Lakin
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