ERISA VICTORY AGAINST AETNA LIFE INSURANCE COMPANY!

Recently, in Williams v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., 13-CV-241-KKC, 2014 WL 5063660 (E.D. Ky. Oct. 8, 2014), our firm won a decision against Aetna where Chief Judge Karen Caldwell found that Aetna’s refusal to pay for Plaintiff’s intravenous immunoglobulin treatment for her selective immunodeficiency condition was arbitrary and capricious because Aetna changed its rationale for denying coverage from “experimental or investigational” to “failure to conduct a trial discontinuation of treatment” and Aetna did not meaningfully investigate the claim. It was a complete victory for our client.

The Williams case was governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 or “ERISA,” where there was no right to a jury trial, punitive damages were prohibited, and discovery was limited. It also meant we had to prove that Aetna’s decision was both wrong and unreasonable. Aetna tried to take advantage of this situation and wrongfully deny benefits to Ms. Williams but ultimately failed. In Williams, we not only developed a strong medical file but successfully engaged in protracted conflict of interest discovery litigation and forced Aetna to turn over documents which exposed their bad behavior.

Our victory in Williams continues our national commitment to injured and disabled individuals. We not only litigate cases on a nationwide basis but serve prominent, national organizations such as the American Association for Justice (AAJ). One of our partners is past-Chair of AAJ’s Disability Law Section. We are also proud of our community work on a state and local level. One of our partners has served the Tennessee Bar Association (TBA) as Chair of its Disability Law Section and we provide free legal services to charitable organizations, including the Chattanooga Community Kitchen and Legal Aid of East Tennessee. Additionally, one of our partners served on the Board of Directors for Hospice of Chattanooga for seven years. We are fully involved in helping the injured and disabled community.