Ehrlich Law Firm wins writ proceeding invalidating Health Net arbitration agreement

California Writs and Appeals

Ehrlich Law Firm wins writ proceeding invalidating Health Net arbitration agreement

California Court of Appeal Second Appellate District Los AngelesJanuary 2007 – The Court of Appeal in Los Angeles has reversed a trial court’s order requiring that Mary Medeiros arbitrate her claims against Health Net, arising from the company’s failure to provide her with timely medical care. Even though Health Net’s enrollment form failed to comply with the mandatory disclosure requirements concerning arbitration clauses, the trial court ordered the case to arbitration.

The Ehrlich Law Firm filed a writ of mandate, which was granted in a published opinion. (Medeiros v. Superior Court (Health Net) (2007) 146 Cal.App.4th 1008. Medeiros is a victory for public employees, because it held that health plans that provide coverage through public agencies must comply with the arbitration-disclosure requirements in the Health & Safety Code and the Insurance Code.


Why you need an attorney with writ petition experience

The lawyer who petitions for a writ must therefore be able to show the Court that the issue presented is (a) interesting, and (b) important. For this reason, the odds of being able to successfully obtain writ review often depend on the skill of the lawyer presenting the writ petition. At the Ehrlich Law Firm, we have experience with drafting persuasive writ petitions, and have enjoyed success in obtaining writ review for our clients at far higher than the overall success rate for writ petitions.

For example, in Elvira v. Superior Court (2007) B200184, we successfully obtained a writ challenging the trial court’s sustaining of a demurrer to plaintiff’s complaint.  In DeBruyn v. Superior Court (2008) 158 Cal.App.4th 1213, we convinced the Appellate Court to consider the issue of whether an insurance policy that purported to bar all mold-related claims, regardless of how caused, was consistent with California law.  And in Medeiros v. Superior Court (2007) 146 Cal.App.4th 1008, we obtained a writ for a client who had been enrolled in her employer’s health plan electronically, without being given the disclosure concerning the plan’s use of arbitration that were required on the application by state law.  In its published opinion, the court held that insurers could not circumvent this law by doing away with the application.

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Sophisticated clients understand that the skills that win trials are not necessarily the skills that win appeals, and that appellate specialists are often best prepared to defend or attack a verdict on appeal.

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