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Health Net Pays Out Millions to Settle Class Action Suits


Aired 4/19/09


Health Net has agreed to settle two class action lawsuits filed by Californians whose insurance was cancelled after they became sick. Legal experts say the settlement will set a precedent. KPBS Reporter Kenny Goldberg has more.


Health Net has agreed to pay affected members a total of more than six million dollars for emotional distress. The company will reimburse plaintiffs for all out-of-pocket medical expenses. And it will pay two million dollars in fines and contribute half-a-million dollars to charity.


Bryan Liang is with the California Western School of Law. He says this sets the standard for any future cases that go to court.


Bryan Liang: Though I think it would be insanity for a lawyer to want to bring this to court, to provide 12 jurors an opportunity to show some frustrations associated with the health insurers in this state.


Class action suits are pending against Anthem and Blue Shield for illegally cancelling members' health coverage.


Kenny Goldberg, KPBS News.



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