Health Net To Pay Up To $261M To Settle Suits

By Erin Marie Daly (August 8, 2008, 12:00 AM EDT) -- After seven years of "extraordinarily contentious" litigation, a federal judge has signed off on a deal that will see Health Net Inc. forking over up to $261 million to settle three lawsuits that challenged the company's treatment of out-of-network claims submitted by insureds with point-of-service plans.

Judge Faith S. Hochberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey said in an opinion filed Friday that the negotiated recovery was "reasonable both in light of the best possible recovery and in light of the attendant risks of litigation."

The parties estimate the settlement's total value to be between $249...

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