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Spinedex Physical Therapy USA Inc. v. United Healthcare of Arizona, Inc.

United States District Court, D. Arizona

January 24, 2019

Spinedex Physical Therapy USA Incorporated, et al., Plaintiffs,
v.
United Healthcare of Arizona Incorporated, et al.,

          ORDER

          HONORABLE ROSLYN O. SILVER SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         The Court has reviewed and considered the Joint Motion for Preliminary Approval, dated December 21, 2018 (“Joint Motion”), and the terms and conditions of the Settlement Agreement, dated December 20, 2018 (the “Settlement Agreement”), a corrected copy of which has been submitted as Exhibit 1 of the Joint Notice of Errata (Doc. 814) filed on January 15, 2019. All capitalized terms used in this Order that are not otherwise defined herein have the meaning assigned to them in the Settlement Agreement. After consideration of the Settlement Agreement and the Joint Motion, together with the other submissions by the Parties in support of the Joint Motion, the Court finds that the Joint Motion should be granted.

         Accordingly, IT IS ORDERED the Joint Motion for Conditional Certification of Settlement Class, Preliminary Approval of Settlement Agreement, and Approval of Form and Content of Notice to Settlement Class Members (Doc. 807) is GRANTED as set forth below.

         IT IS FURTHER ORDERED the Joint Motion to Approve Amended Class Action Fairness Notice (Doc. 813) is GRANTED.

         IT IS FURTHER ORDERED the Motion for Approval of Amended Settlement Administrator (Doc. 820) is GRANTED.

         IT IS FURTHER ORDERED:

         1. The Court hereby preliminarily approves the terms of the Settlement Agreement, subject to further consideration at the Final Settlement Hearing provided for below. The Court concludes that the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate within the meaning of Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, free of collusion to the detriment of the Settlement Class (defined below in Paragraph 2 of this Order), and is sufficiently within the range of reasonableness to warrant the conditional certification of the Settlement Class, the scheduling of the Final Settlement Hearing, and the circulation of the Mailed and Published Notices to members of the Settlement Class, each as provided for in this Order.

         Conditional Certification Of The Settlement Class

         2. For purposes of settlement only, and pursuant to Rule 23(a) and (b)(3) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, the Court conditionally certifies a class composed of:

(i) all Decompression Therapy service providers that provided Out-of-Network Decompression Therapy Services to a Plan Member, submitted a claim for reimbursement of those Decompression Therapy Services pursuant to an assignment of benefits received from that Plan Member, and received a Complete Claim Denial from any of the Released Parties during the period from March 7, 2002 through April 24, 2019; and (ii) all Plan Members who received Out-of-Network Decompression Therapy Services, submitted a claim for reimbursement of those Decompression Therapy Services (including, but not limited to, through an authorized representative), and received a Complete Claim Denial from any of the Released Parties during the period from March 7, 2002 through April 24, 2019.

(“Settlement Class”). Solely for the purposes of settlement, the Court provisionally designates the individual Settling Plaintiffs as representatives of the Settlement Class and finds them fair and adequate representatives of the interests of the Settlement Class with claims typical of Settlement Class Members. In addition, and solely for the purposes of settlement, the Court provisionally designates Garofolo & Ramsdell, LLP (lead counsel), Creitz & Serebin LLP, and Martin & Bonnett, P.L.L.C. as Settlement Class Counsel and finds that they are experienced and skilled attorneys capable of fairly and adequately representing the interests of the Settlement Class.

         3. This conditional certification of the Settlement Class, Settling Plaintiffs, and Settlement Class Counsel is solely for purposes of effectuating the Settlement Agreement. If (a) the Settlement Agreement is terminated or is not consummated for any reason, (b) this Preliminary Approval Order is modified, reversed, or set aside on further judicial review, or (c) the Court for any reason does not enter the Final Order and Judgment, the foregoing conditional certification of the Settlement Class and appointment of Settling Plaintiffs and Settlement Class Counsel shall be void and of no further effect, and the Parties to the Settlement Agreement shall be returned to the status each occupied before entry of this Order without prejudice to any legal argument, position, or privilege that any of the Parties to the Settlement Agreement might have asserted but for the Settlement Agreement.

         Settlement Hearing; Right To Appear And Object

         4. A hearing (the “Final Settlement Hearing”) shall be held before the Court on August 1, 2019, at 10:00 a.m., in the United States Courthouse, United States District Court for the District of Arizona, 401 W. Washington St., Phoenix, Arizona, to determine:

(a) whether the Court should unconditionally certify the Settlement Class and whether Settling Plaintiffs and Settlement Class Counsel have adequately ...

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