FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 05/16/2013
Price and Duncan Legislation Protecting Injured Texans on Governor’s Desk
HB 1869 creates a fair method for quickly and equitably settling competing claims
Austin, TX --- A bill, jointly authored by Representative Four Price and Senator Robert Duncan, seeking to protect the rights of millions of Texans, has reached the desk of the Governor. House Bill 1869 strikes a fair balance between allowing a severely injured accident victim to recover damages caused by a negligent wrongdoer and allowing the victim’s health insurer the ability to timely recover a reasonable portion of the medical expenses paid on his or her behalf.
Currently, most health insurance companies are entitled to reimbursement for all such medical expenses paid, thereby often leaving an injured person with little or nothing from their recovery. There is little incentive for many cases to settle quickly or at all. House Bill 1869 provides an equitable legal framework for settling cases, which helps an injured person timely meet other expenses while providing certainty to health insurers.
"I am very appreciative of the numerous and diverse stakeholders who worked diligently with Senator Duncan and me over the course of the entire session in crafting a bill that is sound public policy for Texans. This is a bipartisan win-win bill that balances the interests of Texas families, health insurance providers and our civil justice system. I thank my House colleagues for favorably supporting this bill by a vote of 144 to 0 and the Senate for supporting this bill 30 to 1. I especially thank the severely injured Texans who courageously testified in support of this bill in both the House and Senate,” Representative Price said.
"House Bill 1869 takes a balanced and fair approach to a very serious issue. I am proud that the stakeholders were able to come together to develop legislation that will benefit our civil justice system. I appreciate Rep. Price's leadership and I look forward to the Governor signing HB 1869 into law," Senator Duncan said.
A partial listing of supporters of House Bill 1869 include: Severely injured Texans and their families, Texas Civil Justice League, Texas Association of Health Plans, Texas Alliance for Patient Access, Texans for Lawsuit Reform, Texas Watch, Texas Association of Defense Counsel, Texas Trial Lawyers Association, Texas Association of Counties and Texas Municipal League Employee Benefit Pools, Driscoll Foundation, Community First Health Care in San Antonio, El Paso First, Scott & White Health Care System, Seton Health Care System, and the overwhelming number of House and Senate members who voted in support.
Jacquelyn Greenwood / Megan LaVoie
(512) 463-0470 / (512) 463-0128