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Case Name Hermanson v. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts PB-MA-0003
Docket / Court 3:00-cv-30156 ( D. Mass. )
State/Territory Massachusetts
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Attorney Organization Legal Services/Legal Aid
NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Case Summary
On September 12, 2000 five elderly and disabled individuals filed suit against the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Division of Medical Assistance, and the Executive Office of Health and Human Services in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. They alleged that the ... read more >
On September 12, 2000 five elderly and disabled individuals filed suit against the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Division of Medical Assistance, and the Executive Office of Health and Human Services in the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts. They alleged that the defendants had violated the Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. § 12111 et seq., the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 794 et seq., and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. They claimed that the defendants applied more stringent standards consisting of high recurring deductibles to the elderly in computing Medicaid benefits and that this forced elderly patients into nursing homes even though with appropriate care they could be treated within the community as they desired.

Plaintiffs also filed a motion for a temporary restraining order and/or preliminary injunction on September 12, 2000 but these motions were avoided by a series of agreements that addressed the needs of the plaintiffs while the suit was pending. The parties negotiated adjustments to the system while conducting discovery and on December 31, 2001 Massachusetts submitted a State Plan Amendment to Center for Medicare and Medical Services for approval that would enable the state to meet the needs of the plaintiffs. On March 5, 2002 the district court (Judge Michael A. Ponsor) denied plaintiffs motion for class certification without prejudice.

After the amendment to the state plan was approved the defendants proceeded to fully adjust state Medicaid rules to make it easier for the elderly to receive benefits that enabled community based care, developed new application forms and information booklets, and trained staff as to how to provide additional aid to the elderly. Based on these developments that parties settled the lawsuit and entered the settlement with the court on February 5, 2003. The settlement provided for a one year period of reports by the defendants to the plaintiffs regarding progress in providing additional care to the elderly. The case was closed on February 10, 2003.

Michael Perry - 02/24/2011


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Benefit Source
Medicaid
Constitutional Clause
Equal Protection
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
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) Commonwealth of Massachusetts
The Division of Medical Assistance
The Executive Office of Health and Human Services
Plaintiff Description Five elderly and disabled individuals who were unable to obtain the services necessary to receive community care because of more stringent requirements applied to the elderly.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Legal Services/Legal Aid
NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Private Settlement Agreement
Order Duration 2003 - 2004
Case Closing Year 2003
Case Ongoing No
Docket(s)
3:00−cv−30156 (D. Mass.) 05/14/2004
PB-MA-0003-9000.pdf | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint 09/12/2000
PB-MA-0003-0001.pdf | Detail
Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion for a Temporary Restraining Order and/or Preliminary Injunuction 09/12/2000
PB-MA-0003-0002.pdf | Detail
FIFTH INTERIM AGREEMENT IN LIEU OF A PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION 01/19/2001
PB-MA-0003-0003.pdf | Detail
Letter RE: Massachusetts State Plan Amendment 01/31/2002
PB-MA-0003-0004.pdf | Detail
STIPULATION OF SETTLEMENT 02/05/2003
PB-MA-0003-0005.pdf | Detail
Judges Neiman, Kenneth P. (D. Mass.) [Magistrate]
PB-MA-0003-9000
Ponsor, Michael Adrian (D. Mass.) [Magistrate]
PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Benjamin, Peter R. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Cronin, Neil (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004
Engel, Matthew (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Hatrick, Kristi (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004
Hitov, Steven A (District of Columbia)
PB-MA-0003-0001 | PB-MA-0003-0002 | PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Krantz, Stefanie L. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0001 | PB-MA-0003-0002 | PB-MA-0003-0003 | PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Pulos, Victoria (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004
Rae, J. Paterson (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0001 | PB-MA-0003-0002 | PB-MA-0003-0003 | PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Rosenau, Marion Tenney (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Steifel, Jan (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0001 | PB-MA-0003-0002 | PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Vance, Verne W. Jr. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0001 | PB-MA-0003-0002 | PB-MA-0003-0004 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Gagne, Cynthia J. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0003 | PB-MA-0003-9000
O'Neill, William P. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Wechsler, Peter T. (Massachusetts)
PB-MA-0003-0003 | PB-MA-0003-0005 | PB-MA-0003-9000
Other Lawyers None on record

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