Aetna Inc. is the defendant in a proposed class action centered around its allegedly unlawful demand that a settlement administrator pay for losses associated with the defendant’s 'reckless' handling of a class action settlement.
Aetna Inc. is the defendant in a proposed class action centered around its allegedly unlawful demand that a settlement administrator pay for losses associated with the defendant’s “reckless” handling of a class action settlement.
The complaint begins by describing a policy change Aetna announced in November 2014 requiring its insureds taking HIV/AIDS medication to fill their prescriptions by mail order instead of at pharmacies, triggering several lawsuits against Aetna over the new policy’s potential privacy concerns – namely, that third parties would be made aware of patients’ medical conditions. The defendant reportedly settled two class action suits and engaged the plaintiff in this case to send out settlement notices to class members and administer claims.
The suit notes that “thousands of notices” were sent out in late July 2017 on Aetna’s behalf in envelopes with glassine windows that revealed the HIV/AIDS status of the individuals to whom the letters were addressed. Following this incident, the complaint continues, at least 10 more lawsuits were filed against the defendant over its alleged failure to, again, protect consumers’ personal medical information.
The case then claims Aetna has demanded that the plaintiff cover the “losses” associated with the envelope incident, but the plaintiff argues that it is “not at fault” and that Aetna and its counsel had approved the notices without putting protective measures in place to ensure the security of class members’ private information. Furthermore, the defendant allegedly failed to encrypt some of the data and sent the plaintiff “far more information than was minimally necessary to perform its job function.”
The plaintiff argues that the defendant’s conduct has caused it to suffer financial losses and damage to its reputation, claiming it has still not been paid for its services, has been unjustly blamed for the defendant’s behavior, and has been named in “negative media coverage” related to the incident at issue.