Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Kappel v. Weyerhaeuser Co.

United States District Court, W.D. Wisconsin

August 11, 2017

MICHAEL KAPPEL and MARINA KAPPEL, Plaintiffs,
v.
WEYERHAEUSER COMPANY, et al., Defendants.

          ORDER ESTABLISHING RECORDS COLLECTION PROTOCOL AND PROCEDURES RELATING TO AUTHORIZATIONS FOR RELEASE OF MEDICAL, HEALTHCARE, PHARMACY, BANKRUPTCY TRUSTS AND OTHER RECORDS

          JUDGE WILLIAM M. CONLEY UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

         AND NOW, this the 11th day of August, 2017, after conferring with the parties as to the protocol for records collection, we have determined that in furtherance of the efficiency and economy of this litigation it is in the interest of all parties to proceed with records collection as outlined below.

         Also before the Court upon the joint application of the parties is a request for an Order aiding in the collection and distribution of records, including medical records, bankruptcy trusts records and employment records. After consideration of this joint request and finding that such an Order would facilitate the orderly, uniform and cost-effective acquisition of relevant information and materials for this litigation, IT IS ORDERED as follows:

         1) The basis for this Order. Plaintiff is required to turn over all medical evidence in Plaintiffs possession, custody, or control. In addition to the medical records, plaintiff is required to submit a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability ("HIPAA")-compliant authorization to the defendants as soon as possible. Some healthcare providers, pharmacies and other entities having custody of these records (including, where applicable, employment, military and Social Security records), however, have refused to release such records unless specific forms prepared by the particular entity are used. Requiring specific forms prepared by individual entities causes a delay in the exchange of relevant information in this litigation. In order to facilitate the timely exchange of medical and other information, the parties have prepared an Authorization Form that is fully compliant with HIPAA. The Authorization Form is attached as Exhibit A.

         It has also been determined by all parties that there is a need to standardize the authorizations for the collection of the bankruptcy trust records. The Authorization Form for the bankruptcy trusts records is attached as Exhibit B.

         In addition, attached as Exhibit C is a Social Security Records Release/Authorization Form. The purpose of this Order is to provide for a simple, uniform, and cost-effective process for the collection of records relevant to the case pending before this Court. Time is of the essence in collecting these records. Accordingly, this Order is issued pursuant to the Court's authority to direct and control the coordinated discovery in this litigation pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 16 and Fed.R.Civ.P. 26(b).

         2) Discovery Affected by this Order. This Order applies to the procurement of information and materials from entities including, but not limited to, physicians, healthcare providers, pharmacies, educational facilities, former and present employers, insurance providers, all branches of the military and any other federal, state and/or local government agencies. This Order also applies to the procurement of information and materials from bankruptcy trusts and/or their administrators, and claims processing facilities, or any third-party entities authorized or designated by the bankruptcy trusts for claims processing or document retention that have access to bankruptcy trust information relating to plaintiff. The Court anticipates that this will constitute all necessary document production from the trusts but it is without prejudice to any party's right to seek permission to obtain records from the bankruptcy trusts in unexpected circumstances.

         3) Parties Affected by this Record-Production Protocol. This Protocol binds plaintiff and all defendants in this case. The firm of Forman Watkins & Krutz LLP ("Forman Watkins"), who represents Defendant Weyerhaeuser in this case, shall collect all medical and other records in this case.

         4) Scope of Record-Production Protocol. The protocol shall be in place for all records collection from this date forward. Defendants shall not be charged with collection of additional records, which may be outlined in the definitions section, which were not previously requested from a provider.

         5) Definitions. This protocol shall employ the following definitions:

         a) "Medical records" refers to:

         i) All records, reports, bills, test results, or other documents concerning the medical care, treatment, and examination of a patient; ii) All pathology, that is not necessary for care and treatment, original tissue blocks, original tissue slides, wet tissue, records, self-histories, histochemical, and immunochemical reports, autopsy reports including but not limited to handwritten notes and/or drawings associated with the autopsy, test results, other documents, or electronic information concerning the medical care, treatment, and examination of the patient, including photomicrographs, millipore filters, written tissue digestion protocol, or other material related in any way to any lung tissue, asbestos fiber burden analysis or ferruginous body study performed on the tissues of the patient; in) Copies of bills or statements of services rendered for such service; iv) X-ray films, MRI films, CT films, and all other imaging films involving the patient.

         b) "Social Security Administration records" refers to any information regarding the person's Social Security records, including but not limited to the information requested on Federal Form SSA-7050-F4 ("Request for Social Security Earnings Information")

         c) "Military records" refers to any and all information regarding the person's U.S. Military records, including but not limited to the information requested on Federal Form SF180 ("Request Pertaining to Military Records")

         d) "Union records" refers to union information and records including but not limited to:

i) Application for membership;
ii) Yearly income including number of hours/days worked per year;
iii) Names and addresses of any and all employers, locations of work sites including any job and/or work logs; iv) Any pension related information including documents showing pension contributions by employers;
v) Records of any grievances filed or claims made for work-related injuries;
vi) Records of all claims for health, accident, pension or disability benefits;
vii) All records pertaining to any claim for injuries allegedly during the course of his/her employment;
viii) All medical reports and records, infirmary records, return to work slips, medical excuses, and accident reports; and
e) "Authorizations" refers to Exhibit A, B, and C to this Order.

         6) Duty to Accept Court-Approved Authorization to Release Medical Records, Employment Records and Bankruptcy Trust Records and Information. The Authorization Forms attached to this Order as Exhibits A, B, and C are HIPAA compliant and have been approved for use in all claims affected by this Order. Accordingly:

a) All physicians, healthcare providers, pharmacies, pharmacy benefits managers ("PBM"), educational facilities, former and present employers, insurance providers, all branches of the military, any federal, state and/or local government agencies, bankruptcy trusts or any other entity asked to produce records relating to a plaintiff or employee (all referred to as "Entities") shall accept the Authorization Form as valid for all claims affected by this Order;
b) Entities may not request or insist upon different forms or terms different from the Authorization Form;
c) When signed by a patient or employee and plaintiff in claims affected by this Order, the Authorization Form shall be relied upon by all Entities to authorize the release of all records, including all medical records;
d) No facility-specific or different form shall be necessary for production of any records relating to a current or former patient or employee;
e) A photocopy or .pdf image of the Authorization Form shall be accepted;
f) No original signatures shall be required on the Authorization Form for production of any records relating to a current or former patient or employees;
g) Any Authorization Form dated after January 1, 2017 shall be effective for production of any records relating to a current or former patient or employee and no differently dated Authorization shall be necessary or requested by the Entities
h) Entities may not impose any waiting period for the production of records; and
i) Entities may not condition the release of requested records upon the payment of unreasonable "processing" or "handling" fees.

         The third party entities in receipt of such release requests shall presume that the Court has reviewed and deems appropriate the provision outlined above. However, this provision does not preclude any affected third party from raising any objection that it feels is appropriate.

         7) Signature of Plaintiffs Representative. In an effort to obtain records for plaintiff in a timely fashion, the Court finds it necessary for the efficient procurement of those records to have specific rules pertaining to the signing of the Authorization Form, attached hereto as Exhibit A, B, and C, by representatives of plaintiff. For the sole and limited purpose of obtaining records associated with a case covered by this Order, plaintiffs counsel may be considered the representative of plaintiff. All Entities are hereby Ordered to accept an Authorization signed by plaintiffs counsel without additional documentation required.

         8) Authorization for Release of Records. Plaintiffs counsel shall serve all counsel of record with a copy of the Court-Ordered Authorization for Release of Bankruptcy Trust Information attached hereto as Exhibit B within a reasonable time period, not to exceed 30 days. The parties may agree to the service of this Authorization on any party who the defendants may designate as their counsel for service of bankruptcy trust discovery and/or authorizations to assist in ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.