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Randy Fearnow Quoted in Media Coverage on Supreme Court Talevski Ruling Regarding Ability to Sue Government-Owned Nursing Facilities in Federal Court

Media Mention

In the case of Health and Hospital Corp. v. Talevski, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday (June 8) that nursing home residents and their survivors have the right to sue in federal court over care received at nursing facilities operated by county or state governments.

Randy Fearnow, a Chicago-based Quarles & Brady partner in the Health & Life Sciences Practice Group with a long track record of representing long-term care providers, offered insight to media outlets covering the news. He was quoted in stories by Axios, McKnights Long-Term Care News and Skilled Nursing News.

In the McKnights article, Fearnow addressed the potential implications of the ruling. An excerpt:

In Indiana, there will be outside ramifications, said Randy Fearnow, a partner at Quarles & Brady, which had filed a friend-of-the-court brief on behalf of providers in Talevski when it was at the Circuit Court level.

“We pointed to the disproportionate impact a decision in favor of Talevski would have on Indiana providers,” Fearnow told McKnight’s. “That concern is now a reality. … The vast majority of government-owned nursing facilities are in Indiana, a state with a highly developed system for adjudicating claims against healthcare providers. Plaintiffs will now be able to circumvent the existing state system and seek recovery instead in federal court under a federal statute which would also allow them to recover attorneys’ fees, relief which is not available under state law.”

Fearnow predicted the ruling would lead to upending of Indiana’s Medical Malpractice Act, especially if the plaintiffs’ bar feels incentivized “by the prospect of fee recovery.” An actuary has also found that liability coverage in Indiana could also increase by two-thirds.

“Now that the Court has spoken, Indiana providers will have to pay close attention to the insurance market and double down on efforts to limit liability associated with nursing home care,” Fearnow said.

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