On May 20, 2003, Bill M. and other developmentally disabled Nebraska residents filed a lawsuit under Americans with Disabilities Act, section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, federal Medicaid statutes, the Due Process Clause, against the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Finance and Support in the United States District Court, District of Nebraska. The plaintiffs, represented by Nebraska Advocacy Services, asked the court for declaratory and injunctive relief, claiming that the State unlawfully provided inadequate funding for developmental disability services, thereby raising the risk that the plaintiffs would be placed institutional (as opposed to residential or community) settings.
On August 6, 2004, the District Court (Judge Richard G. Kopf) denied defendants' motion to dismiss based on 11th Amendment sovereign immunity. Defendants took an interlocutory appeal to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. On May 27, 2005, the Eighth Circuit (Judge Roger Wollman) reversed with respect to Plaintiffs' Title II claim and held that the claim should be dismissed based on Nebraska's sovereign immunity. Bill M. ex rel William M. v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Finance and Support, 408 F.3d 1096 (8th Cir. 2005). The Court held, however, that plaintiffs could still proceed under an almost identical claim under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
On remand, on September 2, 2005, the District Court dismissed Plaintiffs' first claim for relief under Title II of the ADA.
Magistrate Judge David L. Piester issued a Report and Recommendation regarding Plaintiffs' first motion for class certification and appointment of class counsel on June 20, 2005, that recommended that class certification be denied.
On June 22, 2007, Magistrate Judge Piester issued his Report and Recommendation regarding Plaintiffs' second motion for class certification and appointment of class counsel, again finding that class certification should be denied. On July 17th, Judge Kopf adopted the Report and Recommendation and denied class certification. Bill M. ex rel William M. v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Finance and Support, 2007 WL 2068187 (July 17, 2007, D. Neb.)
The parties filed their settlement agreement with the Court on April 2, 2008.
On April 9, 2008, the Court issued a memorandum and order requiring the parties to review the consequences of the Court granting the parties' joint motion and stipulation for approval of settlement. Subject to the limitations stated in the order, the Court approved the parties' settlement agreement on April 21, 2008.
The Court denied Plaintiffs' motion for attorneys' fees on June 20, 2008. Bill M. ex rel William M. v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, 2008 WL 2550648 (June 20, 2008, D. Neb.)
Plaintiffs appealed the denial of attorney fees to the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. Judge Steven Colloton issued the Court's opinion, affirming the District Court's decision, on March 9, 2009. Bill M. ex rel William M. v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Finance and Support, 570 F.3d 1001 (8th Cir. 2009).
There has been no further activity in the case.Haley Waller - 06/15/2010