Tag Archives: medical malpractice mediation

News in Mediation

Lawyers, claimants, mediators note new Medicare fines.

There was a time when potential Medicare liens we easy to negotiate away so the claimant and the claimant’s attorney received more money from settlements.  Those days may be over.

As part of health care reform, Medicare has new teeth in the duty to report payments, settlements, and commitments to pay medical bills.  $1,000 per day for failure to report.  The reporting obligation began in 1989 though.  The reporting obligation is broad.

One should presume that this new emphasis on reporting will lead to Medicare’s reduced willingness to waive liens in order to funnel more money back into Medicare.

For more on this legal update, see:  Work Comp Cost Management Group News LinkedIn.

Rhonda Smiley

Resolution Guru

Mediators To Go

News in Mediation

A business can require customers to mediate before filing a lawsuit.

Do you want to gain the benefit of mediation but don’t know how? Every contract can include a pre-litigation mediation requirement. The terms and procedures can be just one more paragraph in the contract.

What benefit would you get from having a pre-litigation mediation requirement? If the requirement is worded properly, you can block a lawsuit. In legal terms, if a lawsuit is filed before mediation, the court could dismiss the lawsuit until the mediation takes place. This can eliminate the race to the courthouse.

There are different ways to state the mediation requirement. And, there are different types of penalties for failing to mediate that can be put in the contract.

The important thing is that more and more businesses are learning that they can save money and time by agreeing to mediate disputes before allowing people to sue them. They also gain the advantage of the confidentiality mediation provides. Lots of good reasons to mediate.

Some states (notably Florida) are getting strict in requiring mediation before litigation. The legislature recently added a pre-litigation mediation requirement for medical malpractice lawsuits against the University of Florida Health Sciences hospitals and medical professionals. It also requires mediation before suits against condominium associations.

There is no need for a statute or an act of Congress to allow you to take advantage of mediation.  You just need to work with your attorneys to draft a good mediation clause.  Watch this space for a collection of samples we are gathering.

Rhonda Smiley

Resolution Guru

Mediators To Go

www.mediatorstogo.com