UnitedHealth's Offsetting Method Unreasonable, Says 8th Circ.

Law360 (January 15, 2019, 7:45 PM EST) -- The Eighth Circuit ruled Tuesday that UnitedHealth Group Inc. isn’t allowed to offset overpayments to providers from certain health plans by withholding payments to those providers from other health plans, affirming a lower court’s finding that the insurer’s interpretation of plan documents was unreasonable.

The three-judge panel said in its opinion that there isn’t anything in the plan documents that authorizes UnitedHealth’s practice of “cross-plan offsetting,” in which the insurer keeps payments from providers for services rendered under one plan to recoup payments believed to be owed for services they provided under another plan. The panel affirmed the district court’s award...

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