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home / healthcare / press releases

Aug 14, 2000

CONTACT: Jamie Court - 310-392-0522 x327

Lawsuit Against Aetna In State Court Speeds Into Discovery

Judge Holds Case Will Move Forward
The Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights and the law firm of Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach are co-counsels in the case, Ross v. Aetna.

Judge May ruled Friday against Aetna lawyers, who sought to have the case dismissed. The lawsuit claims that Aetna fraudulently represented that it was primarily committed to providing quality health care when, in fact, there were systemic policies in place to undermine the quality of care received by members.

The ruling, which means the case will now move into discovery and document production, has proceeded further than any other class action against Aetna . A Federal Appeals Court ruled Friday, however, in a separate federal case alleging racketeering against Aetna, Maio v. Aetna, to affirm the dismissal of the case by the lower court.

Two other cases against Kaiser, also brought by the Foundation and Milberg Weiss, have successfully survived challenges to the pleadings and are in discovery. Victa v. Kaiser and Olsen v. Kaiser are pending in the San Francisco Superior Court.

"State court cases are in discovery and proceeding to trial," said Jamie Court, executive director of the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. "HMOs are finally having to open up their file cabinets to patients' representatives and have their dirty laundry aired. HMOs will soon have to answer in the open forum of a court for the gap between the promises they make and the services they fail to deliver."

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