Settlement approved in Acadian Ambulance lawsuit

LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) — An Avoyelles Parish judge has approved a settlement in the $5.9 million class action lawsuit against Lafayette-based Acadian Ambulance company.
"No one objected to the settlement and it has been approved," New Orleans attorney Larry Centola told the Town Talk (http://townta.lk/1pCN1Eb ).
Four-hundred forty Louisiana residents have filed claims that they were overcharged by Acadian Ambulance for services sometime in the last two decades.
The deadline to file a claim is July 24. Claims reimbursement should be distributed in September of October.
The settlement was approved Friday.
The lawsuit alleged Acadian was providing services to insured customers at an insurance-approved reduced rate for medical emergencies such as heart attacks. However, if a third party was at fault in a car accident, for example, Acadian would bill individual patients in full, not through the insurance company.
The class action lawsuit involved people who were billed by or paid for services from Acadian between Jan. 1, 1994, and Dec. 31, 2013.
"Acadian continues to believe it abided by all of its obligations under its contracts and existing laws, contrary to what was alleged in these lawsuits," Allyson Pharr, Acadian Ambulance senior vice president of legal and governmental affairs, said in a statement.
. However, the Board of Directors felt it was time to put these matters behind the Company and its employees and focus on providing the most professional ambulance service possible to our patients, as it always has done in the past," Pharr said.

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