Electronic Medical Records – Saving More Than Trees
By: Scott Rees
A recent Harvard study found medical malpractice claims dropped in Massachusetts after doctors began using electronic records. The study tracked 275 doctors, and of those, 33 were targeted by malpractice claims. Only two of the malpractice claims occurred after those physicians had switched to electronic medical records. This
Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Mandate, but States May Avoid Medicaid Expansion
By Ben Mathis In a 5-4 opinion authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court upheld the key “individual mandate” provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. Contrary to early media reports, however, a divided and more complicated part of the decision gives individual States the right to avoid participating in the expansion…
The Eleventh Circuit Rules First Restrictive Covenant Law as Unconstitutional
By: Bradley T. Adler
For those that have followed the saga over the passage of the new restrictive covenant law, the Eleventh Circuit (without much fanfare) has chimed in on the issue and ruled that the Georgia legislature’s first attempt to pass the employer-friendly statute (known as HB 173) was constitutionally deficient. As a
Georgia High Court Expands Waiver of Coverage Defenses
By Philip W. Savrin Last week, the Supreme Court of Georgia issued its decision in Hoover v. Maxum Indemnity Company finding that an insurer had not preserved its right to disclaim on defenses that were not asserted adequately in the disclaimer letter. To briefly review the facts, Hoover sued his employer (EWES) for injuries sustained while climbing from a…
High Court Splits on Arizona Law — Is Georgia Next?
By Ben Mathis and Kelly Morrison In a decision that left both sides claiming victory, the Supreme Court struck down several portions of immigration legislation by the State of Arizona, but also upheld a key part of the law that may further the trend of State legislation attempting to restrict undocumented individuals.
Supreme Court Rules Pharmaceutical Sales Reps Are Exempt
By: Bradley T. Adler and Martin B. Heller
Great news for employers with sales professionals in the pharmaceutical industry. The Supreme Court ruled on Monday that pharmaceutical sales people are exempt from the FLSA’s overtime requirements under the “outside sales” exemption. Previously, federal circuit courts which had ruled
Implications of Wisconsin Recall Vote on Public Sector Unions
By: Jason L. Mitchell
Governor Scott Walker survived June 5th’s recall vote by a margin of 7% or roughly 173,00 votes. Because public sector union rights played an important role in the recall campaign, the outcome likely will carry significant implications for public sector unions in Wisconsin and, potentially, elsewhere in the United States.
Retaliatory Hostile Work Environment Claim Recognized by Eleventh Circuit
By: Joyce Mocek
In a case of first impression for the Eleventh Circuit, the Court in Gowski v. Peake held that a retaliatory hostile work environment was a viable claim. The Court also noted that although discrete acts cannot alone form the basis of a hostile work environment claim, the jury could consider discrete acts
Multi-Million Dollar Jury Award Reduced Because Man Died While Having Sex with Multiple Partners
By: Scott Rees
A cardiologist was found liable for failing to warn his patient to avoid strenuous physical activity. Shortly thereafter, the decedent engaged in strenuous activity — a “threesome.” The patient died in the act. The jury awarded the decedent’s family $5 million. However, the jury decided that the decedent was 40 percent responsible for his own death by
The Pitfall of Coverage by Estoppel in Georgia
By: Philip W. Savrin
The Supreme Court of Georgia swept aside many decades of case law recently when it decided that an insurer cannot rely on policy provisions to deny coverage if it defends its insured without reserving its rights. Before the World Harvest decision, the cases seemed to require that the insured had to show that
The National Practitioner Data Bank
By: Scott Rees
From talking to medical providers and other individuals associated with medical care, there is a lot of mystery and unknowns about the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB).
In fact, almost without exception, at some point during the first fifteen minutes of the initial meeting with a doctor who has been sued for
Preparing for Potential Outcomes of Healthcare Decision
By David Cole The new federal healthcare law, formally known as the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, imposes a number of different requirements on employers. Some of these requirements already are in effect, while others are scheduled to phase in over the next few years. Yet, as the nation awaits the Supreme Court’s decision…