Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Court certifies class action against The Hartford

Court certifies class action against The Hartford

On July 7, 2008, an Illinois Circuit Court certified a class action case against Hartford Insurance Company of the Midwest and Hartford Fire Insurance Company. 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.

Wood River, IL (PRWEB) July 11, 2008

On July 7, 2008, an Illinois Circuit Court certified a class action case against Hartford Insurance Company of the Midwest and Hartford Fire Insurance Company. 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. Hartford Fire Insurance Company adjusts the medical bills of its affiliated Hartford companies, which include Hartford Accident & Indemnity Company, Hartford Casualty Insurance Company, Hartford Underwriters Insurance Company, Twin City Fire Insurance Company, Pacific Insurance Company Limited, Hartford Insurance Company of Illinois, Trumbull Insurance Company, Hartford Lloyd's Insurance Company, Hartford Insurance Company of the Midwest, Hartford Insurance Company of the Southeast, Nutmeg Insurance Company, Sentinel Insurance Company Ltd., and Property and Casualty Insurance Company of Hartford.

The case is pending in the Third Judicial Circuit, Madison County, Illinois (Cause No. 00-L-0720). The court certified the following class:
"All insured persons, or licensed medical providers by assignment, who from August 8, 1990 to the date of this Order: (a) submitted a first-party claim for payment of a medical bill to an Affiliated Hartford Company; (b) had their claim submitted to computer review by Hartford Fire; (c) received or were tendered an amount less than the submitted medical expenses by Hartford Fire; and (d) received or were tendered an amount less than the stated policy limits."

The class includes the residents of all States except Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Utah.

Brad Lakin, President of The Lakin Firm (http://www. lakinlaw. com) said, "This is the first step to successfully litigating this case. Hartford and other insurance companies have targeted medical providers and their legitimate billing practices by implementing a computer program that unilaterally and improperly reduces bills to a pre-determined percentage that Hartford selects. Unfortunately, these tactics lead to substantial losses for medical providers, out of pocket expenses for Hartford's own policyholders and record profits for the insurance company."

A recent report released by the American Association of Justice identified the "Ten Worst Insurance Companies in America (http://www. justice. org/docs/TenWorstInsuranceCompanies. pdf)". They were: Allstate, UNUM, AIG, State Farm, Conseco, WellPoint, Farmers, United Health, Torchmark and Liberty Mutual. The Lakin Law Firm has similar class actions against five of the top ten, including Allstate who was named the #1 worst insurance company in America. The Lakin Law Firm, P. C. regularly represents medical providers and consumers in class action litigation.

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