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Medi–Cal Recovery Litigation


CANHR, on behalf of its members, has been an organizational plaintiff in a number of lawsuits filed against the Department of Health Services (DHS) and the Recovery Unit since 1993. Many of these cases resulted in permanent injunctions against the DHS for failing to comply with federal laws regarding the imposition of estate claims and recovery. CANHR was represented by Amitai Schwartz, Esq., of the Law Offices of Amitai Schwartz in Emeryville.

CANHR v. Schwarzenegger: (2005) San Francisco Superior Court (file # 05440183)
This lawsuit challenged the adoption of "emergency regulations" by the California Department of Health Services concerning the Department’s Medi–Cal Estate Recovery Program. In addition to seeking injunctive relief to require the Department to repeal the regulations until they have complied with the Administrative Procedures Act’s public notice, hearing and comment period, the lawsuit asks for a writ of mandate forbidding the Department from using, administering or enforcing the illegal regulations. The Schwarzenegger Administration signed a stipulated settlement in which they agreed to cease application of the recently filed "emergency" Medi–Cal recovery regulations until they have complied with the requirements of the Administrative Procedures Act’s advance public hearing, comment and filing provisions.
Click here for stipulated settlement (pdf).

California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform et al. v. Diana M. Bontá, et al. (2003) 106 Cal. App. 4th 498, (CANHR v. Bontá)
As a result of a settlement agreement and permanent injunction by the City and County of San Francisco Superior Court, the Department was required to promulgate Estate Recovery regulations in three separate phases and to comply with the provision of the Administrative Procedures Act.
Click here for appellate decision (pdf), final settlement agreement (pdf) and court injunction (pdf).

Dalzin v. Belshe: (N.D.Cal.1997) 993 F.Supp. 732
This case sought declaratory and injunctive relief for disabled children and family members who had claims placed against the estates of their deceased parents in violation of federal law. Resulted in permanent injunction, release of all illegally placed liens and return of monies collected in these cases.
Click here for court order and injunction (pdf).

Bucholtz v. Belshe: (9th Cir. 1997) 114 F.3d 923
This case sought declaratory and injunctive relief against the state DHS for plaintiffs who died prior to October 1, 1993 or who had recovery for services rendered prior to that date when property was held in tenancy in common or living trusts. Resulted in a permanent injunction and the return to all parties of monies illegally collected.
Click here for permanent injunction (pdf).

DeMille v. Belshe: WL 519457 (N.D. Cal. 1994)
This case sought declaratory and injunctive relief against the California Department of Health Services for plaintiffs who had liens placed on their homes after their spouses died. Resulted in a permanent injunction against the state and the release of about 1,000 liens.
Click here for permanent injunction (pdf).

Page Last Modified: June 17, 2008