Issue June 2011

June 2011

Protecting consumers: The elimination of lifetime and annual limits on health insurance benefits

Consistent with the commonwealth's history of robust consumer protections, such as automobile lemon laws1 and treble damages for unfair business practices,2 Massachusetts leads the nation with respect to state health care reform. While federal consumer protections exist, often these laws are not as protective as individual state laws. However, federal health reform encompasses many important consumer protections in regard to access to health insurance.

Redefining just cause in the health care setting

The "just cause" standard has long been a staple of labor relations in all industries, including health care. Normally, most arbitrators will find just cause if the preponderance of the evidence proves the employer's allegation.1 Even where just cause has been established, however, arbitrators will normally engage in a secondary inquiry concerning the appropriateness of the employer's discipline.2

Dodd-Frank’s anti-retaliation provisions: What employees need to know (1)

On July 21, 2010, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act ("Dodd-Frank") was enacted. In the employment context, much has been written about the historic implications of the new monetary awards outlined in Dodd-Frank Section 922 for individuals who "blow the whistle" to the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") about violations of securities laws.