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Case Name Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare PB-PA-0010
Docket / Court 3:09-cv-01112-CCC ( M.D. Pa. )
State/Territory Pennsylvania
Case Type(s) Disability Rights-Pub. Accom.
Public Benefits / Government Services
Special Collection Olmstead Cases
Attorney Organization NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Case Summary
On June 11, 2009, individuals with developmental disabilities and housed in state-run psychiatric institutions in Pennsylvania filed this class action against the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs ... read more >
On June 11, 2009, individuals with developmental disabilities and housed in state-run psychiatric institutions in Pennsylvania filed this class action against the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs claimed that Pennsylvania had failed to provide community-based treatment and habilitation services that would prevent them from being institutionalized. Some of the plaintiffs had diagnosed psychiatric disorders, while others were individuals with disabilities who claimed to be housed in psychiatric facilities even though they had no mental illness. The plaintiffs alleged that the Department of Public Welfare violated Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. They requested class certification, declaratory and injunctive relief, and attorneys' fees and costs.

On September 8, 2009, the court certified the class of individuals with developmental disabilities institutionalized in state psychiatric facilities and not subject to the jurisdiction of the criminal courts. The defendants moved to dismiss the complaint on September 17, 2009. Judge Thomas I. Vanaskie denied this motion on November 19, 2009.

On July 30, 2010, the parties submitted a settlement agreement, which was approved by Judge Christopher C. Conner on September 2, 2010. Pursuant to the agreement, DPW agreed to:

• assess each plaintiff's eligibility for Medicaid waiver services and develop individualized assessment plans;
• develop individualized community support plans for eligible individuals;
• ensure that individuals who are eligible for a community-based waiver program are not discharged to a personal care home;
• establish a review committee to determine which institutionalized individuals were eligible for release into the community;
• provide funding for additional services both in institutions and in the community;
• implement enhanced services in state hospitals;
• provide the plaintiffs with incident reports concerning class representatives or class members no later than five days after their occurrence; and
• issue status reports to the plaintiffs that contain funding updates (every 12 months) and updates on the discharge of class representatives and class members, as well as the admission of individuals to state hospitals (every six months).

The settlement agreement was set to terminate 90 days after the provision of community services to the last person identified as eligible for such services. The defendants agreed to pay the plaintiffs $210,000 for attorneys' fees, litigation expenses, and costs incurred. The docket reflects no further litigation in the case since December 2, 2010.

Beth Kurtz - 02/08/2013
Eva Richardson - 11/20/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Benefit Source
Medicaid
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Content of Injunction
Discrimination Prohibition
Monitoring
Reporting
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Disability
disability, unspecified
Integrated setting
Least restrictive environment
Mental impairment
Discrimination-basis
Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)
General
Deinstitutionalization/decarceration
Discharge & termination plans
Habilitation (training/treatment)
Individualized planning
Placement in mental health facilities
Reasonable Accommodations
Mental Disability
Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified
Mental Illness, Unspecified
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action 42 U.S.C. § 1983
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.
Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701
Defendant(s) Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare
Plaintiff Description Plaintiffs are individuals with developmental disabilities who reside in state psychiatric hospitals.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations
Class action status sought Yes
Class action status granted Yes
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Attorneys fees
Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 2010 - 2016
Filing Year 2009
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Docket(s)
3:09-cv-1112 (M.D. Pa.)
PB-PA-0010-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/02/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
PB-PA-0010-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/11/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiff's Unopposed Motion for Class Certification [ECF# 13]
PB-PA-0010-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/02/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Brief in Support of Plaintiffs' Unopposed Motion for Class Certification [ECF# 14]
PB-PA-0010-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/02/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 17] (M.D. Pa.)
PB-PA-0010-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/08/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Motion to Dismiss [ECF# 19]
PB-PA-0010-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/17/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 31] (M.D. Pa.)
PB-PA-0010-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/19/2009
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Unopposed Motion for Preliminary Approval of the Proposed Class Action Settlement Agreement and for Approval of Class Notice [ECF# 41]
PB-PA-0010-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/30/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Settlement Agreement [ECF# 41-4]
PB-PA-0010-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/30/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 47] (M.D. Pa.)
PB-PA-0010-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/02/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Unopposed Motion for Final Approval of the Proposed Class Action Settlement Agreement [ECF# 49]
PB-PA-0010-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/09/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 56] (2010 WL 4977331) (M.D. Pa.)
PB-PA-0010-0010.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 12/01/2010
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Conner, Christopher C. (M.D. Pa.) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0008 | PB-PA-0010-0010 | PB-PA-0010-9000
Vanaskie, Thomas Ignatius (M.D. Pa., Third Circuit) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0004 | PB-PA-0010-0006
Plaintiff's Lawyers Horowitz, Carol (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0001 | PB-PA-0010-0002 | PB-PA-0010-0003 | PB-PA-0010-0007 | PB-PA-0010-0009 | PB-PA-0010-0011 | PB-PA-0010-9000
Meek, Robert W. (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0001 | PB-PA-0010-0002 | PB-PA-0010-0003 | PB-PA-0010-0007 | PB-PA-0010-0009 | PB-PA-0010-0011 | PB-PA-0010-9000
Murphy, Mark J. (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0001 | PB-PA-0010-0002 | PB-PA-0010-0003 | PB-PA-0010-0007 | PB-PA-0010-0009 | PB-PA-0010-0011 | PB-PA-0010-9000
Resnick, Robin (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0001 | PB-PA-0010-0002 | PB-PA-0010-0003 | PB-PA-0010-0007 | PB-PA-0010-0009 | PB-PA-0010-0011 | PB-PA-0010-9000
Warshaw, Allen C. (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Ulan, Howard (Pennsylvania) show/hide docs
PB-PA-0010-0005 | PB-PA-0010-9000

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