On May 13, 1998, two individuals with developmental disabilities eligible for services under Florida's Medicaid Home and Community Based Services Waiver Program ("HCBSW") filed this class action lawsuit against various Florida state officials in their official capacities under the American with Disabilities Act, 42 U.S.C. § 12101, et seq.; Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 794; Title XIX of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 1396a, et seq., 1396n, et seq., and 42 C.F.R. § 431.200; the Due Process Clause; and 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Fort Lauderdale Division. The plaintiffs, represented by the Advocacy Center for Persons with Disabilities, asked the Court for declaratory and injunctive relief, alleging that state officials routinely denied or provided without reasonable promptness critical HCBW services for Medicaid-eligible, developmentally-disabled persons based on funding concerns rather than medical necessity concerns.
On July 31, 1998, the plaintiffs amended the complaint, adding four new individual plaintiffs and one institutional plaintiff, the Advocacy Center for Disabled Persons.
On January 19, 1999, the plaintiffs amended their complaint a second time to add, among other things, twelve additional individual plaintiffs and a cause of action to enforce certain sections of the Medicaid Act requiring states participating in Medicaid to provide early and periodic screening, diagnosis, and treatment to eligible persons under the age of 21.
On March 10, 1999, the Court (Judge Wilkie D. Ferguson, Jr.) granted the class certification motion. In response, defendants appealed the order to the 11th Circuit.
On August 11, 2000, the 11th Circuit (Judge Stanley Marcus) vacated the class certification order and remanded the case to the district court.
However, before the issuance of the Circuit Court opinion, on August 1, 2000, the parties filed a joint motion seeking approval of a settlement agreement. According to the Settlement Agreement, the Department of Children and Family Services ("Department") would, among other things, certify all Waiver providers, provide relevant training, create a Quality Assurance System, and incrementally enroll more eligible persons on the Waiver pursuant to the timeline in the Agreement.
On August 9, 2001, the Court (Judge Ferguson) approved the settlement.
On November 1, 2004, the parties reached an agreement regarding attorneys' fees and litigation expenses, according to which, the State of Florida agreed to pay $1.15 million in full settlement of all claims for attorneys' fees and litigation expenses.
On September 7, 2005, the Court (Judge Patricia A. Seitz) ordered the case closed.Kunyi Zhang - 02/03/2011