• February 26, 2015

    A Brief History Of The FTC's State Action Battles

    The fact that the Federal Trade Commission prevailed in its second state action case before the U.S. Supreme Court in three years Wednesday is no accident — it's the result of nearly 15 years of studies, lawsuits and administrative actions designed to rein in an antitrust immunity that the agency thought had gotten too broad. Here's a look at how the FTC went about paring down the doctrine.

  • February 26, 2015

    Oracle Hits Ex-Gov.’s Staffers With $33M Cover Oregon Suit

    Oracle America Inc. hit five campaign advisers for disgraced former Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber with a $33 million suit in state court on Thursday, accusing them of secretly interfering with Oregon’s failed health care exchange in order to help Kitzhaber win re-election last year.

  • February 26, 2015

    PhRMA Seeks Quick Win In 340B Orphan Drug Suit

    Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America on Wednesday urged a D.C. federal judge to ax a regulation involving discounts for orphan drugs, setting the stage for an important decision on the 340B program’s future.

  • February 26, 2015

    Faegre Baker Daniels Lands Former Federal Prosecutor

    Faegre Baker Daniels announced Thursday that it has added former federal prosecutor as a partner to focus on white collar criminal defense and health care fraud out of the firm's Washington, D.C., and Chicago offices.

  • February 25, 2015

    6th Circ Says Audit Not Public Disclosure In Reviving FCA Suit

    The Sixth Circuit on Wednesday resurrected a whistleblower’s False Claims Act suit accusing a Tennessee hospital of receiving fraudulent Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements, saying the government’s earlier administrative audit and investigation of the activities wasn’t a public disclosure barring the suit.

  • February 25, 2015

    NC Dental Gives State Boards Map To Avoid Antitrust Trouble

    The Federal Trade Commission's latest victory Wednesday on the state action doctrine in the U.S. Supreme Court may make more work for state professional regulatory boards looking to avoid antitrust scrutiny, but experts said the justices gave states a solid road map for how to supervise those kind of agencies.

  • February 25, 2015

    $327M Risperdal Fine Against J&J Unit Cut In Half

    The South Carolina Supreme Court on Wednesday slashed more than half of a $327 million penalty levied on a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary for whitewashing links between its anti-psychotic drug Risperdal and diabetes, limiting claims to a three-year statute of limitations.

  • February 25, 2015

    Attorneys React To High Court's State Board Antitrust Ruling

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that state professional boards regulating their competitors must be supervised by state governments to avoid federal antitrust scrutiny. Here, attorneys tell Law360 why the decision in North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission is significant.

  • February 25, 2015

    ACA Backers Take Heart In High Court's SOX Ruling

    Affordable Care Act supporters seized on a U.S. Supreme Court decision Wednesday interpreting the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to assert that justices in a looming case will interpret the ACA as allowing universal tax credits, but experts cautioned against assuming that one ruling tips the court's hand.

  • February 25, 2015

    Olympus Sued Over UCLA 'Superbug' Scope Exposure

    A patient who was exposed to an antibiotic-resistant “superbug” in an outbreak stemming from the use of an improperly sanitized medical scope made by Olympus America Inc. is suing the company, alleging it failed to instruct a California hospital on how to clean the scope.

  • February 25, 2015

    Hospital Fights Privileged Docs Release In Texas High Court

    Houston’s Memorial Hermann Hospital System argued Wednesday in Texas Supreme Court that one of its former heart surgeons can’t access privileged documents by simply alleging the hospital took anti-competitive acts, but must provide some evidence the hospital violated antitrust law.

  • February 25, 2015

    Express Scripts Avoids Class Cert. In Misclassification Suit

    A New Jersey federal judge on Tuesday denied certification in a former Medco Health Solutions Inc. employee's putative class action seeking back pay for overtime, saying the evidence presented didn't show employees had been misclassified as exempt prior to a policy change implemented following its 2012 merger with Express Scripts.

  • February 25, 2015

    Bankrupt Ambulance Co. Seeks Stay of Medicare FCA Suit

    A bankrupt ambulance company on Tuesday urged a California federal judge to pause a whistleblower suit alleging it took kickbacks to participate in a scheme to rip off taxpayers by illegally confining psychiatric patients and charging Medicare and Medicaid.

  • February 25, 2015

    Feds Say Ex-Consultant Helped Himself To $8M From Clients

    A former financial consultant was arrested in Tennessee Tuesday morning and charged in New York federal court after an FBI investigation turned up evidence that he had stolen at least $8 million from two health care services companies.

  • February 25, 2015

    Justices Say State Boards Need Review For Antitrust Shield

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that state professional boards controlled by active market participants must be supervised by state governments to avoid federal antitrust scrutiny, siding with the Federal Trade Commission in a dispute with North Carolina's dental board.

  • February 24, 2015

    In Signal To High Court, HHS Denies Having ACA Backup Plan

    The secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Tuesday said there's no administrative way to prevent "massive damage" if the U.S. Supreme Court curtails Affordable Care Act tax credits, a statement that experts called a nod to reality and perhaps a strategically timed warning to the justices.

  • February 24, 2015

    Full 3rd Circ. Won't Review Deepening Insolvency Ruling

    The full Third Circuit on Monday declined to rehear a precedential decision in a suit concerning a bankrupt nursing home that endorsed so-called deepening insolvency as a cause of action for corporate creditors, though a minority of judges who voted against the rehearing indicated support for revisiting the concept in a future ruling.

  • February 24, 2015

    FCRA Claims Nixed In $116M Suit Over Stolen Alere Laptop

    A California federal judge on Monday trimmed claims that Alere Inc. unit violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act in a proposed class action seeking $116 million over the theft of a laptop containing medical-monitoring patient information, saying the information Alere compiles doesn’t constitute a consumer report.

  • February 24, 2015

    Novartis Says Doc Deadline In FCA Suit Not Feasible

    Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp. told a New York federal judge on Monday it would have to hire 40 more attorneys to work around the clock in order to meet a whistleblower’s Friday deadline demand for documents in the False Claims Act suit alleging the company paid kickbacks to pharmacies.

  • February 23, 2015

    Aetna Files $120M Kickback Suit Against Houston Hospital

    A Houston-area hospital CEO offered illegal kickbacks to physicians in exchange for referrals, charging exorbitant fees and practicing deceptive billing that caused Aetna Life Insurance Co. to overpay the hospital by as much as $120 million, the insurer said on Monday.

Expert Analysis

  • St. Joseph Demonstrates Challenges For Breach Plaintiffs

    Doug Meal

    A Texas federal court's recent decision in Beverly T. Peters v. St. Joseph Services Corp. highlights the emerging majority view in data security breach cases that the mere heightened risk of future misuse of stolen data is too speculative to create standing for the purposes of Article III, say attorneys with Ropes & Gray LLP.

  • Unmasking Justice Roberts' Umpire Metaphor In ACA Fight

    Robert B. Hoffman

    What is so concerning about King v. Burwell is that an issue of statutory construction regarding the Affordable Care Act has become so politically driven — the fact that, in all likelihood, the split will hew closely to the U.S. Supreme Court’s liberal and conservative blocs on how to interpret a statute is a troubling sign of the times, says Robert Hoffman of Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott LLC.

  • Behavioral Health And Other Rumblings From JPMorgan 2015

    Richard S. Grant

    After conversations with numerous health care private equity funds and lenders at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference, we can report that the behavioral health sector continues to generate a great deal of buzz. In addition to some of the widely reported multifacility large investments, there is much more interest from funds in serial acquisitions of discrete facilities or operations, say attorneys with McGuireWoods LLP.

  • Legal Departments Are Ramping Up Revenue Searches

    Daniel A. Sasse

    Companies today operate under intense cost and competitive pressures. That reality is driving many legal departments to not only defend cases, but to also get involved in recovering money owed to the company through legal action. And as they do so, they are likely to keep casting a wider net, say Daniel Sasse and Deborah Arbabi of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • Medical Marijuana Cards: A New Scarlet Letter?

    Trish Higgins

    In states where medical or recreational use of marijuana is permissible but with no discrimination protection, employers should be aware that any adverse employment action taken on the basis of marijuana use could be a litigation risk, whether based on a violation of disability laws in those states where courts have not spoken or applicable off-duty conduct laws, say attorneys at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

  • This Week In Congress: Avoiding A DHS Funding Showdown

    Richard A. Hertling

    One major change in the debate over U.S. Department of Homeland Security funding — which expires this Friday — is that a Texas federal district judge has issued an injunction against the Obama administration’s immigration policy, essentially putting it on hold. This may be an opportunity for the Senate to avoid the policy riders and pass a clean funding bill, says Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • In-House Counsel's Dirty 'Little' Secret: Data Leakage

    Jennifer Topper

    Not every data breach is a massive headline-grabbing theft of consumer credit card information. As significant as these events may seem, the more dangerous and prevalent threats are the least visible — occurring through "data leakage." Put simply, this is raw meat awaiting a strike by the plaintiff’s bar, says legal industry adviser Jennifer Topper.

  • IRS Ruling Spells Good News For Captive PCs

    Phillip H. Street

    Every company that uses a captive professional corporation business model, including health care systems, should consider an IRS private letter ruling and the potential tax planning opportunities. The benefits associated with having captive PCs as members of a business corporation’s affiliated group are potentially significant, say attorneys with Paul Hastings LLP.

  • 6 Lessons From 9th Circ. St. Luke's Decision

    Meytal McCoy

    Although it focuses specifically on a health care acquisition, the Ninth Circuit's recent decision in St. Alphonsus Medical Center v. St. Luke’s Health System is instructive on a broad range of antitrust issues, says Meytal McCoy of Mayer Brown LLP.

  • 7th Circ.'s Reading Of 'Referral' Under AKS Is Expansive

    Laurence J. Freedman

    The Seventh Circuit’s decision in U.S v. Patel has vastly expanded the definition of “referral” under the Anti-Kickback Statute. While it is too early to predict whether other courts will follow this precedent, health care professionals should nevertheless take steps to protect themselves in business arrangements with health care providers to whom they refer, or for whom they certify the need for services, say attorneys at Mintz Le... (continued)