SENATE COMMITTEE APPROVES GERRIE MARKS AS ADOI DIRECTOR, COMMITS TO SERIOUSLY CONSIDER CHIROPRACTIC COMPLAINTS
The Senate Finance Committee approved the confirmation of Gerrie Marks as ADOI Director on 03/28/13 after a contentious hearing in which she was harshly confronted over ADOI's failure to process chiropractic complaints and enforce the chiropractic insurance equality law. Committee members extracted a commitment from Ms. Marks to seriously consider and process future complaints filed by chiropractors and their patients, and to enforce the chiropractic insurance equality law. ACS will soon post complete instructions for how to file proper complaints with ADOI to force insurance companies to follow the law.
During the hearing, Ms. Marks was confronted with statements made in the lawsuit against ADOI in which the ADOI attorney stated that the Department is free to ignore the insurance equality law and not enforce it even if there are violations. Ms. Marks assured the committee that if appointed, she would enforce all of the insurance laws in Arizona. She also agreed to meet with representatives of the chiropractic profession to discuss our concerns. Legislators stated that they believed she would follow through on her commitments and so they voted in favor of the confirmation.
ACS intends to immediately try to schedule a meeting with Ms. Marks. We now have the Legislature on our side and so the chances of success with ADOI are much greater than before. Stay tuned for developments which will be reported in emails and posted on the ACS website at www.AZChiropractors.org.
ACS FILES AMICUS BRIEF IN STATE FARM CASE TO PROTECT YOU FROM BEING FORCED TO ACCEPT $12 AS PAYMENT IN FULL FOR A DEPOSITION
State Farm has filed a petition with the Arizona Court of Appeals asking the Court to rule that all treating doctors are "fact witnesses" and not "expert witnesses" in PI cases. Fact witnesses get paid $12 plus mileage for depositions as opposed to expert witnesses who get paid hundreds of dollars per hour to testify. It has been customary for years to consider treating doctors as expert witnesses and now State Farm wants to change the rules. The State Farm petition is posted on the ACS home page at www.AZChiropractors.org.
ACS has now filed an Amicus brief with the Court of Appeals to oppose State Farm. You can read the brief by going to www.AZChiropractors.org and clicking on the link in the 03/27/13 posting. It is uncertain whether the Court will consider the State Farm Petition or the ACS brief and ACS will keep you abreast of all developments. In the meantime, if a defense attorney tries to force you to accept fact witness fees in a deposition, contact ACS to learn how to defend yourself.