University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
new search
page permalink
Case Name Long v. Benson PB-FL-0004
Docket / Court 4:08-cv-00026 ( N.D. Fla. )
State/Territory Florida
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Attorney Organization Steve Gold
Case Summary
On January 15, 2008, a group of Medicaid-eligible adults with disabilities that were confined to a nursing-home facility filed a class action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida under the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act against the state's Health Care Administration and ... read more >
On January 15, 2008, a group of Medicaid-eligible adults with disabilities that were confined to a nursing-home facility filed a class action in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida under the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act against the state's Health Care Administration and Department of Elder Affairs. The plaintiffs, represented by public interest attorneys, asked the Court for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that the state discriminated against them by failing to offer services that would enable them to live in a community setting.

On June 7, 2008, the Court (Judge Robert L. Hinkle) denied defendants' motion to dismiss. On October 14, 2008, Judge Hinkle certified the class consisting of any Florida Medicaid-eligible adult who, at any time during the litigation, resided in a nursing home that received Medicaid funding, and who could and would have resided in the community with appropriate community-based services.

At the same time, the judge granted a preliminary injunction with regard to one of the named plaintiffs, Clayton Griffith. Griffith lived in a nursing home, the cost of which was covered by the state's Medicaid program. He had applied for and been determined eligible for a waiver that should have allowed him to live in the community rather than an institution. But the state's long waiting list precluded him from accessing the program. Nevertheless, he moved out of the home and into an apartment. Judge Hinkle entered an injunction ordering the state to provide Griffith Medicaid coverage for a certified nursing assistant. The state appealed the preliminary injunction, which the 11th Circuit affirmed on June 22, 2010.

The parties cross-moved for summary judgment; the judge denied both motions on January 19, 2011.

After a February 2011 bench trial, Judge Hinkle issued an order and opinion on January 3, 2012 that made permanent the injunction regarding Griffith, dismissed the other named plaintiffs' claims as moot, and decertified the class. To start, all but one of the other named plaintiffs had died during the course of litigation; the remaining one had decided to stay in the nursing home. The judge decertified the class in part because the state legislature had passed a new law which greatly improved the rate at which Medicaid-eligible adults were transitioned from nursing homes to community living. Post-legislation, Judge Hinkle reasoned, it was no longer true that the state had refused to act on grounds that applied generally to the class. He concluded that where the conditions that made class-certification appropriate are no longer present, the court has discretion to decertify, which he chose to do.

Kunyi Zhang - 02/05/2011
Andrew Junker - 10/22/2014


compress summary

- click to show/hide ALL -
Issues and Causes of Action
click to show/hide detail
Issues
Benefit Source
Medicaid
Content of Injunction
Implement complaint/dispute resolution process
Preliminary relief granted
Disability
disability, unspecified
Mental impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Access to public accommodations - governmental
Classification / placement
Confinement/isolation
Habilitation (training/treatment)
Housing
Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)
Medical/Mental Health
Medical care, general
Mental Disability
Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Non-government non-profit
Causes of Action Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Defendant(s) State of Florida
Plaintiff Description A group of Florida residents who were Medicaid eligible adults with disabilities but were currently confined to a nursing facility.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Steve Gold
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Preliminary injunction / Temp. restraining order
Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Form of Settlement None on record
Order Duration 2012 - n/a
Case Closing Year 2012
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
click to show/hide detail
Case Studies Insurer Must Pay $100.5 Million in Redlining Case
The New York Times
Written: Oct. 27, 1998
By: Joseph B. Treaster
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Nationwide Settles Virginia Redlining Suit
Property Casualty 360
Written: May. 06, 2000
By: Amanda Levin
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
4:08−cv−00026 (N.D. Fla.) 05/10/2012
PB-FL-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 01/15/2008
PB-FL-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended Class Action Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief 02/19/2008
PB-FL-0004-0002.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Denying Motion to Dismiss and Deferring Ruling on Class Certification 06/07/2008 (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0003.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Certifying Class 10/14/2008 (2008 WL 4571904) (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0004.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Granting Preliminary Injunction 10/14/2008 (2008 WL 4571903) (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
11th Circuit Opinion (Affirming District Court's grant of a Preliminary Injunction) 06/22/2010 (383 Fed.Appx. 930)
PB-FL-0004-0006.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Document Source: U.S. Court of Appeals website
Order Denying Summary Judgment 01/19/2011 (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0005.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order and Opinion [directing the entry of judgment from the plaintiff Griffith, dismissing the other named plaintiffs as moot, and decertifying the class] 01/03/2012 (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0008.pdf | Detail
Document Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Birch, Stanley F. Jr. (Eleventh Circuit)
PB-FL-0004-0006
Edmondson, James Larry (Eleventh Circuit)
PB-FL-0004-0006
Hinkle, Robert Lewis (N.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0003 | PB-FL-0004-0004 | PB-FL-0004-0005 | PB-FL-0004-0007 | PB-FL-0004-0008 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Hodges, William Terrell (M.D. Fla.)
PB-FL-0004-0006
Sherrill, William C. Jr. (N.D. Fla.) [Magistrate]
PB-FL-0004-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Canan, Stacy (District of Columbia)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Chonin, Neil (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Gold, Stephen F. (Pennsylvania)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Nelson, Alice K. (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Ruiz, Gabriela Magda (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Siegel, Jodi (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Somers, Sarah (North Carolina)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Vignery, Bruce (District of Columbia)
PB-FL-0004-0001 | PB-FL-0004-0002 | PB-FL-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Bennett, Kelly Ann (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Blocker, William Michael II (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Davis, Ashley E. (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Duvall, Jeffries H (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Kent, Russel S. (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Kowalchyk, Dean Clinton (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Porter, L William II (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Sheeran, Andrew T (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Waas, George Lee (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Whitney, Enoch Jonathan (Florida)
PB-FL-0004-9000
York, Thomas B. (Pennsylvania)
PB-FL-0004-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

- click to show/hide ALL -

new search
page permalink

- top of page -