Who is a Class Member
- Class members of the Northwest Hospital Charity Care Act settlement include: “all individuals (or their guardians or representatives) who at any time between June 21, 2010 through July 31, 2017 (a) received emergency care medical treatment in Northwest Hospital’s emergency department; (b) were, at the time of service, “indigent” as defined by WAC 246-453-010(4); (c) were not covered by insurance or any other third-party source of payment, in whole (uninsured) or in part (underinsured), at the time of treatment; and (d) were subject to collections without Northwest Hospital first affirmatively screening them for Charity Care Act eligibility by determining their income and family size.”
If you don’t qualify for this settlement, check out our database of other class action settlementsyou may be eligible for.
The settlement provides for reimbursement (for payments made) or forgiveness (for outstanding amounts owed) related to charges for services provided to charity care-eligible individuals at Northwest Hospital’s emergency department during the Class Period.
Proof of Purchase
- Class members will need to provide documentation about their household, including gross monthly income and assets.
Northwest Hospital Charity Care Act Settlement Notes
- Kamal Amireh, et al. v. UW Medicine/Northwest d/b/a Northwest Hospital & Medical Center
- Case No. 16-2-14579-5-SEA
- Pending in the King County Superior Court
Plaintiff Kamal Amireh initiated this class action lawsuit alleging that Northwest Hospital violated Washington’s Charity Care laws by not affirmatively screening all emergency department patients for eligibility for financial assistance. Amireh, who was uninsured when he went to Northwest and received emergency care, contends he should have received free or discounted care under the Charity Care Act.
According to the Northwest Hospital class action lawsuit, the Charity Care Act requires Northwest to grant free or discounted care to qualifying uninsured or underinsured patients upon determining their income is below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. This obligation to provide charity care continues after the hospital assigns a patient’s account to collections, including after its collection agency files suit to collect on the account. Under current guidelines, 200 percent of the federal poverty level for a family of four in Washington state is an income of $48,600 per year.
Under the terms of the settlement, Northwest will provide reimbursement (for payments made) or forgiveness (for outstanding amounts owed) related to charges for services provided to charity care-eligible individuals at Northwest Hospital’s emergency department during the Class Period.
The settlement also provides for prospective changes in Northwest Hospital policies to help increase awareness about financial assistance for charity-care eligible individuals. In addition to continuing its current financial assistance policies, Northwest Hospital will provide additional information about financial assistance to each emergency department patient, will ask each such patient if he or she is interested in learning more about financial assistance, and will refer to a financial counselor any patient who answers in the affirmative. Northwest Hospital will continue these policies for at least three years from the date of the settlement.
Northwest Hospital believes that it fully complied with the Charity Care laws and denies all liability in this case.
Class members who wish to object to the terms of the settlement or opt-out of the settlement must do so by Jan. 15, 2018. For more information about the claim process, contact Northwest Hospital at 206-668-1800.
- N/A: Claim Form Deadline (For more information about the claim process, contact Northwest Hospital at 206-668-1800.
- 1/15/18: Objection or Opt-Out Deadline
- 3/20/18: Final Fairness Hearing at 4:00 pm PT (class members do not need to attend this hearing in order to receive a slice of the settlement pie).
- Mail: Amireh v. NW Hospital Settlement Administrator, c/o KCC Class Action Services LLC, PO Box 404041, Louisville, KY 40233-4041
- Class Counsel Phone Number: 1-800-542-0794 x 149
- Matt Geyman of Columbia Legal Services