Damages: Gratuitous Write-Off by Medical Provider

By on March 9, 2012 - Comments off

Sanchez v. Strickland, (Fifth District, November 4, 2011) 133 Cal.Rptr.3d 342, 11 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 13,660, 2011 Daily Journal D.A.R. 16230

The heirs of three individuals who were killed when their car collided with a truck hauling two semi-trailers filed an action for wrongful death against the owner and operator of the truck. One of the decedents had been hospitalized for four months following the accident, and as a result, his estate had incurred substantial medical bills.

Following a jury verdict in favor of the plaintiffs, the defendants filed a motion to reduce the amount of verdict representing medical expenses to the actual amounts paid or owed. The verdict had included over $7,000 which had been gratuitously written off by one of the decedent’s medical care providers. The trial court granted the motion but the court of appeal modified the award, holding that the limitation on recovery in Howell v. Hamilton Meats (2011) 52 Cal.4th 541 with respect to amounts providers have agreed to accept from insurers, does not extend to amounts gratuitously written off: Read the rest »

Posted in: Damages