List of 67 Important Cases Re Liens, Cases 18-23 | San Diego Injury Law Firm

18.    Sniadach v. Family Finance Corp., 395 U.S. 460 (1969)

Due process in the form of notice and a hearing is required before the state, in aid of a creditor, may allow even the temporary seizure of private property by statute. (Compare to the California hospital lien statutes that provide for no notice or hearing to the owner of the claim.)

 

19.    Carpenters H & W Trust v. McCracken, 83 Cal.App.4th 1365 (2000)

ERISA does not preempt an action for enforcement of a settlement agreement of a federal court action arising from assertion of a reimbursement provision. This case is distinguishable from Jeff Pilot v. Krafka in that it arises directly out of the breach of a settlement contract rather than an employee benefit plan. Therefore, it is not preempted.

 

20.    Goldberg v. Superior Court, 23 Cal.App.4th 1378 (1994)

Under Probate Code 3601, the trial court on a minor's compromise hearing has jurisdiction and authority to determine the reasonable amount of expenses on non- parties to be paid out of minor's settlement. Ct reduced pmt of D.C.'s bill from $21K to $4K but also noted that DC could sue on contract outside of minor's compromise.

 

21.    Westaff v. Arce, 298 F.3d 1164 (9th Cir. 2002), cert. denied 537 U.S. 1111 (2003) First 9th Cir. case after S. Ct. decision in Knudson that debunks the "defendant in possession" standard being argued by insurance companies/unions. Pltf's attorney had placed the disputed funds in escrow pending outcome of case. 9th Cir. still ruled that the assertion of a reimbursement provision was barred under ERISA. FIRST & ONLY CASE TO HOLD THAT CONGRESS INTENDED TO BAR REIMBURSEMENT ACTIONS WHEN IT DRAFTED ERISA.

 

22.    Nishihama v City & County of San Francisco, 93 Cal.App.4th 298 (2001)

Hospital's right to recover on hospital lien does not extend beyond the amount it agreed to accept from insurance co as payment in full for services to the injured plaintiff. Cites and follows Hanif and extends it to private insurance context.

 

23.    Swanson v. St. John's Reg. Med. Ctr., 97 Cal.App.4th 245 (2002)

In a B & P 17200 case against hospital for asserting hospital liens for more than it was obligated to accept as payment in full under private insurance policies, court held that a business practice does not violate 17200 if permitted by law (like CC 3045.1). In footnote 2, the court indicated that the above holding in Nishihama was dicta as to the hospital because it was not a party to the action. Ct refused to follow Grauberger and noted (in dicta) that hospital liens do not require an underlying debt from the patient to the hospital and that the Legislature has exempted hospitals from balance billing limits by enacting CC 3040.

 

Mark C. Blane is a San Diego Auto Accident Attorney, and the managing lawyer of the Law Offices of Mark C. Blane, a San Diego, California Personal Injury Law Firm devoted to representing families of injured persons of automobile accidents. If you or someone you love, has been injured or killed in San Diego County, or Southern California, due to the negligence of another, please order your FREE copy of Mr. Blane's book, The 10 Secrets You Need To Know About Your Injury Case, BEFORE You Call A Lawyer. It is full of helpful information, insights, and secrets that will help you protect your legal rights.  It normally sells for $16.95; however, it is free to all California residents, or those injured in a California accident.