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post #1 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 08:35 PM Thread Starter
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Skip this if you love Wal-Mart

Is there some kind of award for being this f*king evil?
It's almost like it's becoming some kind of competition out there.
I honestly don't know how some of these lawyers live with themselves.. I hope they are miserable.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1195...hpp_us_pageone

Accident Victims Face
Grab for Legal Winnings
Wal-Mart Paid Bills
For Mrs. Shank, Then
Sued for Money Back
By VANESSA FUHRMANS
November 20, 2007; Page A1

JACKSON, Mo. -- A collision with a semi-trailer truck seven years ago left 52-year-old Deborah Shank permanently brain-damaged and in a wheelchair. Her husband, Jim, and three sons found a small source of solace: a $700,000 accident settlement from the trucking company involved. After legal fees and other expenses, the remaining $417,000 was put in a special trust. It was to be used for Mrs. Shank's care.

Instead, all of it is now slated to go to Mrs. Shank's former employer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc.



Vanessa Fuhrmans, the family
Above, Deborah and Jim Shank. Right, a photo of the family before the accident.
Two years ago, the retail giant's health plan sued the Shanks for the $470,000 it had spent on her medical care. A federal judge ruled last year in Wal-Mart's favor, backed by an appeals-court decision in August. Now, her family has to rely on Medicaid and Mrs. Shank's social-security payments to keep up her round-the-clock care.

"I don't understand why they need to do this," says Mr. Shank on a recent visit to the nursing home, between shifts as a maintenance worker and running a tanning salon. "This girl needs the money more than they do." Mrs. Shank, who needs help with eating and other basic tasks, spends more time alone since Mr. Shank had to let her private caregiver go. At some point, he says, she may have to be moved from a private to a semi-private room in the nursing home where she lives.

The reason is a clause in Wal-Mart's health plan that Mrs. Shank didn't notice when she started stocking shelves at a nearby store eight years ago. Like most company health plans, Wal-Mart's reserves the right to recoup the medical expenses it paid for someone's treatment if the person also collects damages in an injury suit.

Until recently, many employers didn't vigilantly enforce the provision, and some states and federal courts didn't think the claim held water. But as the cost of covering workers continues to escalate, employers and health plans are getting more aggressive about going after the money. A Supreme Court ruling last year also has given them a clearer legal map to suing employees and winning.

In insurance circles, the recovery practice is called "subrogation." Employers and insurers say it's necessary to ensure that medical expenses aren't paid twice. By recovering those costs from someone who's been compensated elsewhere, they argue, they're saving money for everyone on the plan.

Sharon Weber, a spokeswoman for Wal-Mart, declined to discuss the details of the Shanks' case, but said the company was obliged to act in the interest of the health benefits of its employees as a whole. "While the case involves a tragic situation, our responsibility is to follow the provisions of the [company health] plan which governs the health benefits of our associates," she said.

"Employers are trying to make sure these plans run as efficiently as possible," says Jay Kirschbaum, a senior vice president at global insurance broker Willis Group Holdings. "They also have a fiduciary duty to the plan and the entire group of employees that are covered by it."

The Recovery Practice

Already, the recovery practice is one of the variables that plaintiffs lawyers are considering as they decide whether it's in their clients' interests to participate in the $5 billion offered by Merck & Co. to settle lawsuits over its painkiller Vioxx. Health plans recovered sizable amounts for medical expenses from other big product-liability settlements, such as for the "fen-phen" diet-drug combination and Sulzer Orthopedics' hip implants. Many insurers and the employer plans they administer are expected to pursue a piece of the Vioxx settlement.

In cases like the Shanks', where injuries and medical costs are catastrophic, accident victims sometimes can be left with little or none of the money they fought for in court. Health plans are increasingly adopting language such as Wal-Mart's, which dictates that it is to be paid first out of any settlement, regardless of what remains for the injured person. Moreover, the victim is responsible for all legal costs in pursuing the suit.

"It's especially in the catastrophic cases that people are almost never fully compensated," says Roger Baron, a professor of law at the University of South Dakota and a specialist in health-plan law. "And then their health plan, that's been collecting premiums from them all this time, wants to take it away?"

Tempting Savings

Such recoveries represent a tempting savings for insurers, employers and union-administered plans. The American Benefits Council and America's Health Insurance Plans, the health-insurer lobby, estimate health plans recoup some $1 billion a year in medical claims from accident settlements and other third parties. A cottage industry of auditing firms, benefit-recovery specialists and subrogation lawyers help them. They estimate that between 1% and 3% of health-care spending is potentially recoverable from such claims.

"In the past, employers used to think of this as an afterthought," says Tom Lawrence, chief executive of Memphis-based Benefit Recovery Inc., whose clients include Southwest Airlines Co. and hospital chain HCA Inc. HCA says it saw annual savings from recouped claims rise to $1.8 million in 2006 from just under $800,000 in 2000 after hiring the firm.

Benefit Recovery contracts directly with employers. It says it's able to recover between $12 and $15 per health-plan member a year -- up to $1.5 million for a big plan with 100,000 members -- by recovering medical expenses from injury-suit settlements.

Until recently, employers and insurers generally didn't go after small claims. But more-sophisticated claims tracking has made it easier. Recovery companies systematically search claims for certain medical codes -- say, a sprained ankle or head trauma -- that flag a potential accident. Claims examiners then mail a questionnaire and often follow up with calls. If the injured person confirms it was an accident, the firm tracks whether the patient files an injury suit.

If there is a lawsuit settlement, employers may seek to recoup money they paid for medical expenses. In many cases, it's relatively cut and dried: Often medical expenses are just a portion of the overall damages award, or the accident victim's attorney reaches a compromise with the health plan ahead of any settlement.

Some plans are taking a further step, refusing to pay claims in the first place, unless the person filing the claim signs an additional form promising to reimburse the plan from settlement proceeds.

Don Burgett, an engineer on an offshore oil-drilling ship, from Texas, has been waiting for his health plan to pay $89,000 in medical claims since his daughter's accident two years ago. Magan Burgett, then 18, was thrown from the back of an all-terrain vehicle in October 2005, tearing her liver, breaking her jaw and fracturing her back.

Soon after Magan's parents submitted the bills for her two-week stay in an intensive-care unit, her father's health plan -- the Maryland-based MEBA Medical and Benefits Plan -- mailed him a reimbursement agreement that restated the plan's rights to a potential settlement.

"To consider claims related to your accident," it said, Mr. Burgett had to sign it first. When he didn't, MEBA stopped paying claims after reimbursing several hundred dollars in Magan's medical expenses.

Neal Korval, MEBA's outside counsel, says that asking a plan member to sign a reimbursement agreement in such cases is standard procedure and a policy outlined in its health plan rules. It helps prevent accident victims and their attorneys from trying to "freeze out" the plan from a potential settlement, he says, and also reminds or advises the plan member of his or her obligations.

In September, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas sided with the Burgetts, ruling that MEBA's health plan summary, which it considered the prevailing document, didn't stipulate such conditions to pay a claim. The Burgetts' attorney says they secured a $75,000 accident settlement -- a net of $50,000 after legal expenses -- though that isn't enough to cover Magan's medical expenses. Mr. Korval says MEBA has recently reached a settlement with the family over the unpaid medical claims, but declined to disclose terms.

How much power health plans have to enforce subrogation is based on a hodgepodge of federal and state law still being tackled in the courts. A pivotal Supreme Court ruling last year gave health plans a leg up. In that case, a Maryland couple, Joel and Marlene Sereboff, were injured in an accident while returning a rental car to an airport in 2000; they required $75,000 in medical care. The couple later received a settlement of $750,000, from various parties, related to the accident.

Mid Atlantic Medical Services, now owned by UnitedHealth Group Inc., administered the health plan of Mrs. Sereboff's employer and sued the couple when they refused to pay the company out of their settlement.

Money Set Aside

In a unanimous decision, the court upheld that Mid Atlantic had the right to enforce its claim, in large part because it could point to the settlement money set aside in an easily identifiable fund. The couple had placed the money in a separate account when the issue went to court. The decision has made it easier for plans to go after settlements, legal experts say.

Few such cases have attracted as much attention in legal circles as the Shanks'. Mrs. Shank took a job in 1999 stocking shelves at a Wal-Mart store in Cape Girardieu, Mo. She jumped at the shift from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. so that she could spend days at home with her three sons, Mr. Shank says. After a probation period, she qualified for benefits under the Wal-Mart health plan in February 2000.

One day about three months later, as she and a girlfriend were touring local yard sales, a semi-trailer truck plowed into the driver's side of her minivan. Her friend's injuries were minor, but Mrs. Shank suffered major brain trauma and spent the next several weeks in intensive care. She drifted in and out of a coma, and the hospital, for months.

"One doctor didn't give her any chance," says Mr. Shank, a maintenance worker at Southeast Missouri State University. Her medical bills climbed past $460,000. The health plan paid them promptly. "They were terrific in that respect," he says.

It also sent Mr. Shank several notices that he was to inform Wal-Mart's health plan before he settled any suit. In 2002, the Shanks did sue and won a settlement from G.E.M. Transportation Inc., owner of the truck. The firm had only $1 million in liability coverage, though. For his own losses, Mr. Shank received $200,000, of which $119,000 remained after legal expenses. He says he spent most of it toward a one-story house fitted with ramps and wider doors, which is more accessible than the family's previous three-level home.

Mrs. Shank's own settlement was $700,000. After legal expenses and attorney fees, the remaining $417,477 was placed in a court-created special trust designed specifically for Mrs. Shank's future care. The Shanks' lawyer, Maurice Graham, wrote the Wal-Mart health plan informing them. Mrs. Shank had received no funds directly, he said, and therefore had nothing to pay Wal-Mart back.

Nearly three years went by, Mr. Shank says, before they heard again from Wal-Mart. Mrs. Shank struggled a year rotating in and out of the hospital and rehabilitation programs. She could no longer use her right arm or three fingers on her left hand because of neurological damage. She couldn't feed or dress herself and conversations with her family were limited to all but simple questions. Eventually, her husband moved her to a nursing home for around-the-clock care. Medicare and Medicaid pay for the nursing home. Mr. Shank used some of the trust's proceeds to continue paying a private aide to care for her there.

'A Decent Quality of Life'

"We wanted her to have a decent quality of life, and we still had the money," he says. He hoped he could also use it to pay the roughly $130,000 in bills for Mrs. Shank's rehabilitation and a return hospital visit after her coverage expired.

But in August 2005, Wal-Mart re-emerged with a lawsuit against the Shanks demanding repayment for $469,216 in medical costs out of their settlement. It charged that the Shanks had violated the terms of the health plan by not reimbursing it. The company also demanded payment of legal fees and interest for the cost of suing the Shanks for the money.

Mr. Graham, the Shanks' attorney, says he approached Wal-Mart's attorneys about negotiating a compromise, but was told the health plan wanted to proceed with the lawsuit. "We're not contending that Wal-Mart isn't entitled to a payment. We're saying they're entitled to one based on equity," he says. Since Mrs. Shank wasn't fully compensated for her damages in the first place, he argues, Wal-Mart should also expect only partial reimbursement.

Administrators of employer-financed health plans "have an obligation to participants to be impartial," the Wal-Mart spokeswoman says. "Virtually all health plans include subrogation provisions as a way to control health plan costs."

In August last year, U.S. district judge Lewis Blanton sided with Wal-Mart, ruling that when Mrs. Shank signed on to Wal-Mart's health plan she was obligated to abide by its terms.

The ruling came six days before the Shanks' 18-year-old son, Jeremy, was killed in September last year in Iraq shortly after he arrived in the U.S. Army's 25th Infantry Division.

"I wanted to give up at that point, tell Wal-Mart they won," Mr. Shank says, but his lawyer, Mr. Graham, said he'd continue with appeals.

Mrs. Shank went to Jeremy's funeral. But because of memory problems due to her injuries, she gets confused about what happened. On a recent morning, she cried several times and asked what had happened to her middle son. Mr. Shank says that he obtained a divorce from Mrs. Shank this year, partly because of advice from a health-care administrator that she might be more eligible for public aid as a single woman. Mrs. Shank, who has been declared incompetent by a court, hasn't been informed of the divorce by her family.

The Shanks lost an appeal before a three-judge panel in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals in August and last month were denied a request for a hearing before the entire court. They plan to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, though only a small percentage of cases are chosen to be heard.

"Sometimes I want to tell Wal-Mart, 'Ok, you won on the principle. But just let us keep the money," Mr. Shank says.

Write to Vanessa Fuhrmans at [email protected]
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post #2 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 08:43 PM
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I hate to say it, but their health coverage should not have to burden the cost when there was a settlement made on the familys behalf. The settlement should have been made for medical bills and pain/suffering. The fault lies with either the familys lawyer or the family not thinking the health insurance company would want their money back. Ask others that have been in this situation.

I have my flameproof suit on.
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post #3 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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my insurance wanted a 33.3
as did the lawyer
so...
me - crutches for 2 years 33.3
lawyer - settled out of court.. 6 hours work? 33.3
BCBS - approx 300k in medical bills - 33.3

all this is a split of 100k
so... guess everyone but the lawyer took it in the ass.

.... and now off to conservapedia.com to make sure i can't get anything from that!
sorry.. inside joke.. check the "world politics" forum hahah
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post #4 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 08:55 PM
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Main Entry: sub·ro·ga·tion
Pronunciation: "s&-brO-'gA-sh&n
Function: noun
1 : an equitable doctrine holding that when a third party pays a creditor or obligee the third party succeeds to the creditor's rights against the debtor or obligor; also : a doctrine holding that when an insurance company pays an insured's claim of loss due to another's tort the insurer succeeds to the insured's rights (as the right to sue for damages) against the tortfeasor called also equitable subrogation
2 : an act or instance of subrogating
NOTE: Subrogation can take place either by operation of law or by contractual agreement.

Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law, © 1996 Merriam-Webster, Inc.


Link to the above definition

The doctors could go one step further. The doctors took a lower amount for services because of an agreement with the insurance company. If the doctors and other caretakers wanted to, they could now ask for the full amount for their services because it would be handled as a cash account.

In your case, you may have gotten screwed by the lawyer. I do not know the incidentals in your particular matter. Sounds like you should have gotten much more for pain and suffering, and the party you settled with should have paid the full amount owed to BCBS.

Last edited by Dave13; 11-20-2007 at 09:04 PM.
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post #5 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:07 PM Thread Starter
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I got the limits of her insurance..
I had 100k - she had 100k.. I thought you could combine them.. right? wrong.
since we had exactly the same amount she was not technically underinsured...
That is why I now carry 300-500 so I have more.. Plus it could be combined.. and it only costs <100 a year more..

I could have gotten over a million if I went to court.. I'd never see it.. she was a college kid.. Why force her thru a bankruptcy I know she'd go thru.. and I wouldnt get squat.
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post #6 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:16 PM
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I didn't read all that but.... I hate walmart with a passion. I just went there to pick up a blender (against my better judgement) and the place is packed with ignorant foreigners that don't speak english. After buying the stupid blender and getting home to see that it's not what I need (I want a metal mechanism, not plastic) I go to return it and stand in line for 30 minutes while the customer service (is that what they call themselves?!) Work at snail speed and get through 3 people...

Oh ya, and I had to park about 3 blocks away in fear of my truck getting hit with a cart as there were about 500 carts around the parking lot.

Fuck walmart!
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post #7 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:17 PM
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A decent lawyer should have warned you about that. I almost lost everything, my eyesight, marriage, daughter, house, and my life when I hit a very deep depression. I gained 50 lbs I still have not lost when I ate my depression away. I got the bills paid, and a small amount for myself. Sometimes we cannot collect for our misfortunes or others peoples ignorance. What doea not kill us makes us stronger. People that know me see I am in a wonderful marriage with a daughter that loves us. Hell, Mandy let me get three bikes this year, sell all of them, and she is buying me the bike of my choice over the winter. Sometimes it is a live and learn thing. Sometimes it sucks. Sometimes the lesson we learn is life is painful. I am sorry you were hurt for so long. When we meet, I will buy you a cold one.
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post #8 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:19 PM
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I didn't read all that but.... I hate walmart with a passion. I just went there to pick up a blender (against my better judgement) and the place is packed with ignorant foreigners that don't speak english. After buying the stupid blender and getting home to see that it's not what I need (I want a metal mechanism, not plastic) I go to return it and stand in line for 30 minutes while the customer service (is that what they call themselves?!) Work at snail speed and get through 3 people...

Oh ya, and I had to park about 3 blocks away in fear of my truck getting hit with a cart as there were about 500 carts around the parking lot.

Fuck walmart!
Damn those ignorant foreigners. I bet they deliver pizzas for a living too.

"The man who makes me your enemy, it is he who be the guilty one....Here I abandoned peace and desecrated law; fortune it is you I follow. Farewell to treaties. From now on war is our judge!"
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post #9 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:19 PM
 
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THis problem would be resolved if we had nationwide health care. It's rediculous that people can point fingers at the family and say. "You should have known" and all that it's crap nobody thinks that they are gonna get tboned and spend the rest of their life in a semi-retarded state.

Down to Walmart and our National healthcare.
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post #10 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:33 PM
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If we ever get nationwide health care, I'm opting for private medical centers. Tried the public health care system once and never again.

"The man who makes me your enemy, it is he who be the guilty one....Here I abandoned peace and desecrated law; fortune it is you I follow. Farewell to treaties. From now on war is our judge!"
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post #11 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-20-2007, 09:35 PM
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If we had nationwide healthcare, Silentalero could finally get his penis removed like he has always dreamed of.
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If we ever get nationwide health care, I'm opting for private medical centers. Tried the public health care system once and never again.
they have that in germany
i'd be all for that
base level care for all.. better for those who care to pay...
that makes sense..
i think the bump to go to the better private care over there was 200 euros a month or so... that might have been for the couple not the individual...
not to shabby if you ask me
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post #13 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 07:47 AM
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lawyers and insurance it doesn't get more evil then that
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post #14 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:06 AM
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Damn those ignorant foreigners. I bet they deliver pizzas for a living too.
haha! Blast from the past!

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post #15 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:07 AM
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Back on topic. Yeah thats a really fucking evil thing to do. I don't shop at WalMart anyway just becasuse I can't stand that place. This just cements my feelings a little more

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post #16 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:19 AM
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Dave13 is right. This is basic insurance subrogation. Nothing surprising or evil here. This lady is trying to double dip, have her cake and eat it too, so to speak. The reason she got the settlement she did is because it included the medical expenses. Why should her insurance be stuck with paying the bill when the trucking co. responsible for the injuries has agreed to pay it?

Don't journalist have real news to report, or are personal agenda hit pieces the main thing in their job description?

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post #17 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:21 AM
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Funny how thouse of us that got hurt really bad understand this.
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post #18 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:22 AM
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Back on topic. Yeah thats a really fucking evil thing to do. I don't shop at WalMart anyway just becasuse I can't stand that place. This just cements my feelings a little more
Its the insurance co. doing the suing. And its not just "evil Walmart," contrary to the media template. Every insurance company does this in tort cases. It doesn't matter who you work for. If someone else is responsible for the injuries, they pay for them. They're at fault, not the insurance company.

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post #19 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:23 AM
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Dave13 is right. This is basic insurance subrogation. Nothing surprising or evil here. This lady is trying to double dip, have her cake and eat it too, so to speak. The reason she got the settlement she did is because it included the medical expenses. Why should her insurance be stuck with paying the bill when the trucking co. responsible for the injuries has agreed to pay it?

Don't journalist have real news to report, or are personal agenda hit pieces the main thing in their job description?


But the cash wasen't meant to cover only his origional medical bills. Who is now responsible for his care for the rest of his life?


"a $700,000 accident settlement from the trucking company involved. After legal fees and other expenses, the remaining $417,000 was put in a special trust. It was to be used for Mrs. Shank's care.

Instead, all of it is now slated to go to Mrs. Shank's former employer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc"

Eric
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post #20 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:25 AM
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Walmart, like most large companies is self insured. They basicially use BCBS to guide them as what to pay and not to pay. Walmart pays the bill, not BCBS. Walmart should get theit money back.
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post #21 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:30 AM
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But the cash wasen't meant to cover only his origional medical bills. Who is now responsible for his care for the rest of his life?


"a $700,000 accident settlement from the trucking company involved. After legal fees and other expenses, the remaining $417,000 was put in a special trust. It was to be used for Mrs. Shank's care.

Instead, all of it is now slated to go to Mrs. Shank's former employer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc"
Yes, it was. That's what settlements are for. The lawyer knew or should have known to ask for all the medical expenses, past, present and future, both as a duty to his client and to maximize his own fee. If the case went to trial he is EASILY guaranteed that much and that is the reference point by which settlement negotiations are guided.

If he did not do this, I'm very curious as to why.

Either the lawyer is guilty of malpractice, or there are some important details being left out in this very obvious hit piece.

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post #22 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:34 AM
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Yeah, I see alot of details missing. I understand the insuracne company should get their cash back if a victim receives a injury settelment for the accident. If they didn't, the victim would be double dipping.

But also shouldn't the victim receive their money back from all the years of paying health insurance? The fact the insuracne company received the health insurance premeimums for years, and also got reimbursed for their payout. It seems like they're double dipping as well

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post #23 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maynard View Post
Yeah, I see alot of details missing. I understand the insuracne company should get their cash back if a victim receives a injury settelment for the accident. If they didn't, the victim would be double dipping.

But also shouldn't the victim receive their money back from all the years of paying health insurance? The fact the insurance company received the health insurance premiums for years, and also got reimbursed for their payout. It seems like they're double dipping as well
For some reason I doubt she paid 470k in premiums working at Walmart.

The purpose of insurance is to cover you when no one is at fault (accident), or the person at fault is judgment proof. I wouldn't say the company is double dipping because it will have to pay out if there is an accident later on, and they aren't getting paid twice. You're paying insurance premiums now and not getting a payout. I wouldn't call that double dipping.

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post #24 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob View Post
For some reason I doubt she paid 470k in premiums working at Walmart.
I know I was reaching with that statement

Just rubs me the wrong way when multi bajillion dollar company takes money away from their employees. Money that was earmaked for one of their own's medical care stemming from an accident

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post #25 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 08:56 AM
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If I took 470K from Union Pacific, I am sure they would want their money back. They are the largest railroad in the world. I get even with them, one derailment at a time.
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post #26 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 09:02 AM
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It also says this....

"Like most company health plans, Wal-Mart's reserves the right to recoup the medical expenses it paid for someone's treatment if the person also collects damages in an injury suit.

Until recently, many employers didn't vigilantly enforce the provision, and some states and federal courts didn't think the claim held water."


I'm not in the insurance or legal industry so I don't know the culture or what is standard practice. But if this clause is rarely inforced by corps, then the victims lawyer probablly didn't anticipate WalMart to come after the money.

Weather that is sloppy legal practice is a different story. But if WalMart is now enforcing a clause that was previously ignored and now victims are being hurt because of it, then thats the shitty part.

Just because Walmart CAN do something, doesn't mean they should IMO.

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post #27 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 09:31 AM
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If the lawyer did not know this could happen, he/she should have a job collecting shopping carts for Wal-Mart. I also notice the timing of this coming out in the media, right before black friday. Hmmmm....
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post #28 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 09:33 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob View Post
Yes, it was. That's what settlements are for. The lawyer knew or should have known to ask for all the medical expenses, past, present and future, both as a duty to his client and to maximize his own fee. If the case went to trial he is EASILY guaranteed that much and that is the reference point by which settlement negotiations are guided.

If he did not do this, I'm very curious as to why.

Either the lawyer is guilty of malpractice, or there are some important details being left out in this very obvious hit piece.
Policy limits were 1 mil...
Lawyers all but refuse to go beyond policy limits..
maybe for a large company.. in my case.. going after a student making 25k a year for 7 figures was just dumb...
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post #29 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maynard View Post
I know I was reaching with that statement

Just rubs me the wrong way when multi bajillion dollar company takes money away from their employees. Money that was earmaked for one of their own's medical care stemming from an accident
Isn't this the same company that used to take out large life insurance policies on it's low wage employees... and collect on them as an investment if they died?

If I remember correctly that news broke and they had to stop doing it due to public outrage but were quick to point out that it was not illegal. (in all fairness it's SOP for execs..right?)

Still.. Rather morbid.. smart thinking though
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post #30 of 39 (permalink) Old 11-21-2007, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by gconsier View Post
Policy limits were 1 mil...
Lawyers all but refuse to go beyond policy limits..
maybe for a large company.. in my case.. going after a student making 25k a year for 7 figures was just dumb...
I'm all too familiar with policy limits for trucking companies. funny story, really


Lawyers don't have the ultimate say on whether or not to settle. It's true they like to stay within insurance policy limits just because the defendant will be more apt to settle if its covered. As soon as it comes out of their own pocket, they will be more likely to litigate. However, the client must authorize a settlement.

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