On March 30, The New York-Presbyterian Hospital, represented by the law firm of Sills Cummis Epstein & Gross P.C.,gained a significant victory when the Hon. Loretta A. Preska of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York dismissed with prejudice all of plaintiffs' claims in Kolari v. New-York Presbyterian Hospital, 04-Cv-5505.
The District Court found that none of plaintiffs' claims had any legal basis and held that neither federal nor New York law required the hospital to provide care to allegedly uninsured plaintiffs at the same rates it had negotiated with health insurers.
Kolariwas one of a group of suits against not-for-profit hospitals in federal and state courts throughout the country.This decision is the first by a federal court to dismiss all of the state law claims, as well as federal law claims, with prejudice. The District Court began its opinion by saying: "Plaintiffs here have lost their way; they need to consult a map or a compass or a Constitution because Plaintiffs have come to the judicial branch for relief that may only be granted by the legislative branch."
The New York-Presbyterian Hospital was represented by James S. Frank, Jeffrey J. Greenbaum and James M. Hirschhorn of Sills Cummis (see page 12) and James V. Kearney and Stuart S. Kurlander of Latham & Watkins. Mr. Frank heads the Sills Cummis New York Health and Hospital Law Practice. Mr. Greenbaum is chairman of the Sills Cummis Class Action Litigation Practice Group.