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Case Name Rosie D. v. Romney MH-MA-0005
Docket / Court 3:01-cv-30199-MAP ( D. Mass. )
State/Territory Massachusetts
Case Type(s) Child Welfare
Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Mental Health (Facility)
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Case Summary
On October 31, 2001, the Center for Public Representation, the Mental Health Legal Advisors Committee, and a private law firm filed a class action under 42 U.S.C. § 1396 against the governor of Massachusetts in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. The lawsuit was filed on ... read more >
On October 31, 2001, the Center for Public Representation, the Mental Health Legal Advisors Committee, and a private law firm filed a class action under 42 U.S.C. § 1396 against the governor of Massachusetts in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Rosie D. and eight other Medicaid-eligible children, aged 6 to 15, who were hospitalized or at risk of hospitalization due to the lack of home-based services, and the class included tens of thousands of children in Massachusetts who were eligible for Medicaid (MassHealth) and had emotional, behavioral, or psychiatric disabilities. The plaintiffs alleged that the state had failed to provide medically necessary services as required under the federal Medicaid Act and that it had failed to inform parents and children that they were entitled to these covered services.

On December 19, 2001, the defendants filed a motion to dismiss. On March 29, 2002, the district court (Judge Michael A. Ponsor) denied the motion to dismiss and certified the case as a class action. The defendants appealed the denial of their motion to dismiss. On November 7, 2002, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit rejected the State's appeal, holding that children had an enforceable right under the Medicaid Act to medically necessary treatment. Rosie D. v. Swift, 310 F.3d 230 (1st Cir. 2002).

On December 16, 2004, the defendants filed a motion for summary judgment. On March 25, 2005, the district court denied the motion for summary judgment, and the case headed for trial.

The case went through a six-week trial in the spring of 2005 before Judge Ponsor in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts. On January 26, 2006, Judge Ponsor handed down a 98-page decision that found that the Commonwealth violated the EPSDT provisions of the federal Medicaid Act by failing to provide home-based services to thousands of children across the state. The result of this failure is that thousands of Massachusetts children with serious emotional disturbance are forced to endure unnecessary confinement in residential facilities or to remain in costly institutions far longer than their medical conditions require.

As a result of the court judgment, the parties entered into negotiations to create a remedial plan. After six months of negotiations that failed to produce agreement, both sides presented separate remedial plans to the court. On February 22, 2007, Judge Ponsor approved a modified version of the defendants' Remedial Plan. The court's adopted plan sought to restructure the children's mental health system by incorporating intensive home-based services, including behavioral health screenings, assessments, case management, crisis intervention, and in-home therapeutic supports. The Plan, which had strict timelines, must be fully implemented by June 2009. The court also appointed a monitor to oversee the implementation, mediate disputes between the parties, and determine compliance with the Court's Order.

On January 16, 2009, the defendants filed a motion to modify the judgment and give them until July 1, 2010 to implement the plan. On February 27, 2009, the district court granted some extra time to the defendants, allowing them until December 1, 2009, to fully implement the remedial plan.

Both parties submitted periodical implementation reports on the remedial plan. On Nov. 29, 2011, Judge Ponsor partially granted the plaintiffs' motion to insure timely access to remedial services. The judge ordered the state to propose a new plan for standards governing enrollment in Intensive Care Coordination, and a new timetable for implementation of these standards. The Court also ordered that the state must appear before it every 60 days to report on its compliance progress.

Over the next few years, both parties continued to submit status reports, and Judge Ponsor proceeded to extend the monitor's role in six-month increments and endorsed the parties' agreement regarding the monitor's budget.

On December 22, 2014, Judge Ponsor approved a proposed order for attorneys' fees covering the period from July 1, 2013, through June 30, 2014, in the amount of $200,131.05. On December 21, 2016, a further $348,599.14 was approved for fees for the period between July 1, 2014, and June 30, 2016. On December 28, 2018, a further $340,553.01 in fees was approved for the period of July 1, 2016, through June 30, 2018.

On February 7, 2019, Judge Ponsor denied Defendants' Motion Regarding Substantial Compliance and to Terminate Monitoring and Court Supervision. He noted that, despite "persistent prodding from the court, Defendants are still grossly failing" to bring themselves in compliance with the remedial plan. Specifically, Defendants failed to demonstrate they could provide "reasonably prompt" care to a substantial portion of the plaintiffs, which is defined as offering an initial appointment fourteen days after initial contact. Citing this, and lack of effort at compliance, Judge Ponsor retained the court's power to continue its supervision.

On March 13, 2019, Judge Ponsor transferred the case to District Court Judge Richard G. Stearns.

Kristen Sagar - 03/14/2009
Andrew Junker - 12/04/2014
Edward Cullen - 03/21/2019


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Male
Benefit Source
Medicaid
Content of Injunction
Develop anti-discrimination policy
Monitor/Master
Monitoring
Reasonable Accommodation
Reporting
Defendant-type
Hospital/Health Department
Jurisdiction-wide
Disability
disability, unspecified
Least restrictive environment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Classification / placement
Commitment procedure
Deinstitutionalization/decarceration
Habilitation (training/treatment)
Juveniles
Public assistance grants
Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)
Reasonable Accommodations
Reassessment and care planning
Rehabilitation
Medical/Mental Health
Mental health care, general
Mental health care, unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Defendant(s) State of Massachusetts
Plaintiff Description all Medicaid-eligible children in Massachusetts with psychiatric or emotional disabilities who would benefit from home-based services
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Order Duration 2007 - 2019
Filing Year 2001
Case Ongoing Yes
Additional Resources
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Docket(s)
3:01-cv-30199-MAP (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/13/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint
MH-MA-0005-0001.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 10/29/2001
Protective Order (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0006.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 12/01/2001
Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion to Dismiss
MH-MA-0005-0002.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 12/18/2001
Appellate Decision (310 F.3d 230)
MH-MA-0005-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | External Link | Detail
Date: 11/07/2002
Memorandum and Order with Regard to Plaintiff's Motion to Compel (256 F.Supp.2d 115) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0015.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 04/14/2003
Source: Westlaw
Joint Motion to Amend Protective Order
MH-MA-0005-0007.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 12/01/2003
Memorandum of Law in Support of Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment
MH-MA-0005-0008.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 12/16/2004
Memorandum of Decision (410 F.Supp.2d 18) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0012.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | External Link | Detail
Date: 01/26/2006
Plaintiffs' Final Remedial Plan
MH-MA-0005-0011.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 08/18/2006
Defendants' 8/29/2006 Remedial Plan Proposal
MH-MA-0005-0010.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 08/29/2006
Memorandum and Order Regarding Remedy [ECF# 354] (474 F.Supp.2d 238) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0014.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 02/22/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Stipulation on the Monitor
MH-MA-0005-0013.pdf | External Link | Detail
Date: 04/05/2007
Judgment [ECF# 367-2] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/16/2007
Memorandum and Order Regarding Judgment [ECF# 367] (497 F.Supp.2d 76) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0005.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | External Link | Detail
Date: 07/16/2007
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order Regarding Plaintiff's Motion for Attorney's Fees and Costs (593 F.Supp.2d 325) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0016.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/14/2009
Source: Westlaw
Memorandum and Order Regarding Defendant's Motion to Modify Judgment [ECF# 443] (599 F.Supp.2d 80) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0009.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | External Link | Detail
Date: 02/27/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 492] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0017.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/04/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order Regarding Plaintiffs' Motion for Attorneys' Fees and Cost [ECF# 522] (759 F.Supp.2d 146) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0018.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/03/2011
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order Regarding Plaintiffs' Supplemental Motion to Insure Timely Access to Remedial Services [ECF# 557] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0019.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/29/2011
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Re: Third Motion for Attorney's Fees [ECF# 567] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0021.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/14/2012
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order Regarding ICC Access Standard, Ongoing Monitoring, and Status Conference [ECF# 571] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0022.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/20/2012
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 625] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0020.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/25/2013
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order for Defendant to Pay Plaintiffs' Attorney Fees [ECF# 676] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0023.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/22/2014
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order for Attorneys' Fees Through 2016 [ECF# 766] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0024.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/23/2016
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order for Attorneys' Fees Through 2018 [ECF# 875] (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0025.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/28/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Memorandum and Order Denying Defendants' Motion to Terminate Monitoring [ECF# 877] (2019 WL 1012007) (D. Mass.)
MH-MA-0005-0026.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 02/07/2019
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Coffin, Frank Morey (First Circuit) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003
Fletcher, Betty Binns (Ninth Circuit) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003
Neiman, Kenneth P. (D. Mass.) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0015
Ponsor, Michael Adrian (D. Mass.) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0004 | MH-MA-0005-0005 | MH-MA-0005-0006 | MH-MA-0005-0009 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0014 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-0017 | MH-MA-0005-0018 | MH-MA-0005-0019 | MH-MA-0005-0020 | MH-MA-0005-0021 | MH-MA-0005-0022 | MH-MA-0005-0023 | MH-MA-0005-0024 | MH-MA-0005-0025 | MH-MA-0005-0026
Selya, Bruce Marshall (FISCR, D.R.I., First Circuit) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003
Stearns, Richard Gaylore (D. Mass.) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Burling, James C (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Costanzo, Cathy E. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0013 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Foote, Gabrielle E (New York) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Halston, Daniel W. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-9000
Laski, Frank J. (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Morton, Samantha J (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Prendergast, James (Illinois) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Rhee, John Sup (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Rucker, Kathryn L (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Schwartz, Steven J. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0013 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Shanahan, Sara Jane (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0001 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Coakley, Martha (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0013
Hammond, Daniel (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Hitt, John R. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0008 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Hollander, Bart Q (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Jones, Timothy M. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Kehoe, Ronald F. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-9000
Lovell, Stephanie S. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0015 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Reilly, Thomas F. (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0008
Rice, Juliana DeHann (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0013 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Roney, Deirdre (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0002 | MH-MA-0005-0003 | MH-MA-0005-0008 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-0016 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Salinger, Kenneth (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-9000
Simms, Adam (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0007 | MH-MA-0005-0008 | MH-MA-0005-0012 | MH-MA-0005-9000
Other Lawyers Hitov, Steven A (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003
Pulos, Victoria (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
MH-MA-0005-0003

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