On May 31, 2000, Washington residents with disabilities filed a lawsuit under the Americans with Disabilities Act against the Secretary of the State of Washington Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) in the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington. Plaintiffs, ...
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On May 31, 2000, Washington residents with disabilities filed a lawsuit under the Americans with Disabilities Act against the Secretary of the State of Washington Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) in the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington. Plaintiffs, represented by private counsel, asked the Court for declaratory and injunctive relief, claiming that Washington state's current provisions for the medically need violate the ADA.
On January 31, 2001, the Court (Judge Thomas S. Zilly) entered a stipulation and order regarding the definition of the class. The class was defined as follows: Washington residents who are or will be (1) individuals with a disability within the meaning of 42 U.S.C. § 12102(2)(A); (2) eligible under the State Medicaid Plan for nursing facility care; and (3) eligible for COPES Medicaid waiver services but for having income that exceeds the categorically needy income limit (300% of the Supplemental Security Income federal benefit rate).
The Court granted Defendants' motion for summary judgment on June 20, 2001, concluding that Defendants had not violated the ADA because Plaintiffs were excluded from public programming based on their income and not on their disability. Townsend v. Quasim, 163 F. Supp. 2d 1281 (W.D. Wash. 2001).
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the District Court's grant of summary judgment for the Secretary of Washington's Department of Social and Health Services on May 1, 2003. Townsend v. Quasim, 328 F.3d 511 (9th Cir. 2003). The Court found that the Secretary's refusal to offer community-based in-home nursing services to some disabled persons may violated the ADA.
On January 21, 2004, the parties came to a preliminary agreement, and the Court stayed proceedings for two years. Defendants agreed to a number of things, including: Defendant agreed to provide community-based and in-home long-term care services to class members; Defendant would continue to provide for 600 class members to receive long-term care services in community-based settings and would implement long-term in-home care services for 200 class members; and, Defendant would pay Plaintiffs' counsel $175,000 in attorneys' fees and costs.
The parties submitted a joint status report and a stipulation for dismissal without prejudice on June 30, 2006. There has been no further action in the case.Haley Waller - 04/30/2011