Proposed settlement clarifies due-process rights for people in Innovations waiver

Please read the full description of the legal agreement that has been issued by Disability Rights of North Carolina.

It contains important information about your rights to request the services you want and need, clarifies that the Supports Needs Matrix is a guide for services -- not a hard limit on them. It also contains information about your rights to ask for a legal review of your situation (due process).

The settlement agreement is temporary for now, but the court will likely approve it and make it permanent unless they have major reason not to do so. Innovations waiver participants and those representing them have the right to object to the terms of the settlement; see below for ways to do that.
 

 

NOTICE

To Consumers served by the N.C Innovations waiver, their families, and legal guardians:

PROPOSED SETTLEMENT OF L.S. et al. v. WOS et al.

United States District Court – Eastern District of North Carolina

Case No.: 5:11-CV-354

L.S. et al. v. Wos et al. is a federal lawsuit filed in July 2011. In 2012, this case was certified by the Court as a class action lawsuit on behalf of certain participants in the N.C. Innovations Waiver.

In this lawsuit, the plaintiffs allege that the Defendants have not provided sufficient notices and hearing rights regarding Innovations Waiver services as required by the federal Medicaid statute and by the due process clause of the U.S. Constitution. The Defendants deny those allegations.

The lawyers representing the parties have reached a Settlement Agreement to settle the lawsuit. In reaching the Settlement Agreement, neither Defendant is admitting any wrongdoing, but the parties all wish to avoid further litigation while clarifying the due process rights for all N.C. Innovations Waiver participants. The Court plans to approve the Settlement Agreement unless a good reason is given not to do so. If the Settlement Agreement is approved by the Court, it will apply to all participants in the N.C. Innovations Waiver. The Settlement Agreement includes detailed description of the steps that will be taken to:

  • Ensure that Innovations Waiver participants are empowered to request the services they want to request, in the amount and for the length of time they want to request them;
  • Clarify that the Support Needs Matrix will be used as a guideline and not as a binding limit for certain N.C. Innovations services;
  • Clarify and explain the due process rights of N.C. Innovations Waiver participants;
  • Inform N.C. Innovations Waiver participants of their rights and responsibilities under the Waiver.

RIGHT TO OBJECT: Any class member has the right to object to this proposed Settlement Agreement. However, no class member has the right to exclude himself or herself from being bound by the settlement if it is approved by the court.

You may review the proposed Settlement Agreement by visiting the Civil Clerk’s office, US Courthouse, 413 Middle Street, New Bern, NC, 28560. The entire Settlement Agreement is also available at all of the following websites:

  • www.healthlaw.org/LSsettlement
  • www.disabilityrightsnc.org/LSsettlement
  • www.lssp.org/LSsettlement

You may file written objections to the dismissal by mailing your reasons for objection to the Clerk of Court at the above address no later than March 11, 2015. If you wish to file evidence to support your objections, you must file the evidence in writing by that date.

You also have the right to object to the Settlement Agreement in person at a hearing that will be held at 1:30 p.m. on April 6, 2015. The hearing will take place in Courtroom, US Courthouse, 413 Middle Street, New Bern, NC, 28560.

To ask questions of plaintiffs’ attorneys about the case or the procedure for objecting to the dismissal, call toll free 1-877-235-4210 or write to John Rittelmeyer or Jennifer Bills, Attorneys at Law, Disability Rights N.C., 3724 National Drive, Suite 100, Raleigh, NC 27612.