While employers and insurers are quite familiar with the impact of Medicare in the context of a workers’ compensation claim, Medicaid can also greatly affect the handling of a workers’ compensation claim as well.  Medicaid is a federal entitlement program which provides healthcare to the poorest population of the United States.  Many groups of people are eligible for Medicaid, including individuals who are age 65 and older, pregnant, blind, disabled and parents and children with very low or no income.  However, Federal law provides that Medicaid is the “payer of last resort.”  This means that if another insurer or program has a legal responsibility to pay for costs concerning a Medicaid-eligible individual, i.e. a “third party,” that entity is generally required to pay all or part of the cost of the claim prior to Medicaid making any payment.   Third parties that may be liable include settlements from a liability…       Read More

6 Recent Real-Life Cyber Extortion Scams  Dark Reading June has been quite the month for news of cyber extortion, ransomware, and hacking hostage taking. As cyber crooks look to new and ingenious ways … Bobby Jindal signs student privacy bill pushed by Common Core opponents  The Times-Picayune   Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed a bill to insulate student data from being used inappropriately by the Department of Education, federal government or … Congressman calls for halt to FTC breach probe amid claims of ‘corporate blackmail’ Computerworld Tiversa said the data included Social Security Numbers, treatment codes and insurance data on about 10,000 people. At the time, Tiversa said the… Data Security Best Practices Fox Business  That is why every business -big or small– needs a data-security-best-practices plan. If your company’s data is lost, the cost to recover or recreate it … Paytime facing lawsuit over data breach witf.org  It’s believed…       Read More

This is a statement commonly heard in the estate planning practice.  It is an assertion cloaked in unstated assumptions, and the meaning therefore varies.  Generally, however, the client making this statement usually has one of two things in mind.  First, a surprisingly large number of people seem to think that their assets will escheat to the state if they don’t give them away before death.  While some states do have harsher laws on escheat than does Georgia, none, to the author’s knowledge, are so draconian as those clients seem to fear.  The other, perhaps more common, meaning of this statement is that the client wants to impoverish himself or herself so as to qualify for Medicaid assistance, generally in the context of nursing home care.Gifting property involves all sorts of complex considerations, and no exhaustive analysis will be attempted here.  Rather, a few basic principles are offered for your consideration….       Read More

Almost every practicing dentist has experienced a problem patient.  He or she may skip appointments, have unrealistic expectations, fail to pay bills, or simply be noncompliant with recommended care and treatment. Under certain circumstances, a dentist has the right to terminate his or her professional relationship with such a patient.  However, there are steps that must be followed in order to avoid unforeseen legal issues, including a board investigation or even a lawsuit. The Georgia Board of Dentistry regulates unprofessional conduct by dentists, and under Georgia rules and regulations, improper termination of a dentist/patient relationship constitutes unprofessional conduct.  Keep in mind that a dentist/patient relationship can exist even where a dentist has provided dental treatment to a patient only once within the past year.   In order to comply with the legal requirements for terminating a dentist/patient relationship, the patient must receive adequate notice of the termination, including the date…       Read More

Under the current law, legally married couples can apply for emergency leave to care for their partners under the Family and Medical leave Act if they reside in a state where same-sex marriage is legal.   The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division today announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to revise the definition of spouse under the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) in light of the United States Supreme Court’s decision in United States v. Windsor, which found section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to be unconstitutional.  The NPRM proposes to amend the definition of spouse so that eligible employees in legal same-sex marriages will be able to take FMLA leave to care for their spouse or family member, regardless of where they live.  Attorney General, Eric Holder, is also due to issue a review, on June 20, 2014, of how the…       Read More

How master hacker Sabu turned FBI cybersleuth  USA TODAY NEW YORK – Helping federal investigators disrupt cyberattacks and nab hackers was more than just a tough job for the computer maven known by … NHS patient information in data breach by Diagnostic Health  BBC NEWS As many as 10,000 NHS patients may have been affected by a series of data protection breaches by a private firm. A leaked report from the … 5 Ways Hackers Could Target You During the World Cup Fox Business Recently, the hacker collective known as Anonymous announced that it … Don’t do your online banking from the same computer that you use to read … Man charged with hacking email of Bush family, government officials   CBS News Lazar, 42, faces charges including wire fraud, unauthorized computer access, cyberstalking and aggravated identity theft. The indictment states that … FCC chairman outlines cyber security vision Cyber…       Read More

Welcome to the HBS Correctional Health care Practice Group BLOG.  In this, our first entry, we offer an overview of the law that governs lawsuits brought by inmates against health care practitioners in correctional settings. In 1976, the United States Supreme Court issued the landmark decision in Estelle v. Gamble regarding the rights of incarcerated persons related to receiving health care.  Unlike the private sector, inmate health care providers cannot refuse patients.  The health care providers in correctional facilities do not have a choice concerning the examination and treatment of inmates.  Regardless of a prisoner’s criminal history, attitude, or condition, practitioners are mandated to address the health-related issues about which inmates complain.  While practitioners in correctional facilities still maintain discretion and judgment in their diagnoses and treatment of inmates, there exist some guidelines within which practitioners should consider as they work in a correctional setting. In suits involving claims related…       Read More

With new hack, cellphone can get data out of computers  The Times of Israel The hack isn’t new, according to Prof. Yuval Elovici, head of BGU’s Cyber Security Lab. The technique was used to attack Iranian servers in the… Data breaches bring litigation related to directors and officers liability  Business Insurance During an SEC cyber security roundtable in March, the agency’s … Cyber breaches are “a significant issue in terms of the liability,” said John D. UPDATE 1-EU says firms like Google and Facebook must meet privacy rules   Reuters BRUSSELS, June 6 – Companies based outside the European Union must meet Europe’s data protection rules, ministers agreed on Friday, … UK law introduces life sentence for cybercriminals   Wired.co.uk The Computer Misuse Act 1990 is to be amended to make sure that hackers that launch serious attacks, such as those on critical infrastructure, could … Brokers’ slip-ups add to…       Read More

Tennessee’s new law prohibits employers, including government entities, from requesting or requiring access to the private social networking or online accounts of employees and job applicants. The Employee Online Privacy Act of 2014, signed by Governor Bill Haslam on April 29, 2014, becomes effective January 1, 2015. Under the new Act, employers of any size may not: 1. Request or require an employee or an applicant to disclose a password that allows access to the employee’s or applicant’s personal Internet account; 2. Compel an employee or an applicant to add the employer to the employee’s contacts list associated with a personal Internet account; 3. Compel an employee or an applicant to access a personal Internet account so that the employer can observe its contents; or 4. Take an adverse action or refuse to hire an employee or applicant because of a failure to disclose information or take an action specified…       Read More

Can Student Data Improve Learning Without Compromising Privacy? Government Technology Striking a balance when it comes to student data means creating an environment where technology and privacy work in tandem to maximize learning. Healthcare IT Security Worse Than Retail, Study Says  InformationWeek For its report, BitSight analyzed the security performance of Standard & Poor 500 firms based on data such as communication with a botnet, malware … Iranian hackers use fake Facebook accounts to spy on US, others   Reuters BOSTON (Reuters) – In an unprecedented, three-year cyber espionage campaign, Iranian hackers created false social networking accounts and a fake … Ill. court dismisses claims of potential loss from Advocate data breach   ModernHealthcare.com In the first substantive ruling in last year’s theft of four laptop computers at Advocate Medical Group in which 4 million patients’ data was stolen, …. Brazilian government hit by cyber attack  ZDNet Earlier this year,…       Read More