This case was last updated from Los Angeles County Superior Courts on 06/29/2019 at 01:19:24 (UTC).

LANDEN BARETTE ET AL VS BLUE SHIELD OF CA

Case Summary

On 03/09/2018 a Contract - Insurance case was filed by LANDEN BARETTE against BLUE SHIELD OF CA in the jurisdiction of Los Angeles County Superior Courts, Stanley Mosk Courthouse located in Los Angeles, California.

Case Details Parties Documents Dockets

 

Case Details

  • Case Number:

    ****7564

  • Filing Date:

    03/09/2018

  • Case Status:

    Pending - Other Pending

  • Case Type:

    Contract - Insurance

  • Court:

    Los Angeles County Superior Courts

  • Courthouse:

    Stanley Mosk Courthouse

  • County, State:

    Los Angeles, California

Judge Details

HOLLY E. KENDIG

 

Party Details

Guardian Ad Litem and Plaintiff

BARRETTE ANNA

Defendants and Respondents

BLUE SHIELD OF CALIFORNIA

DOES 1 TO 100

Minor

BARRETTE LANDEN

 

Court Documents

Minute Order

6/26/2018: Minute Order

CIVIL DEPOSIT

6/26/2018: CIVIL DEPOSIT

DEFENDANT CALIFORNIA PHYSICIANS' SERVICE DBA BLUE SHIELD OF CALIFORNIA'S ANSWER TO PLAINTIFFS' COMPLAINT

8/6/2018: DEFENDANT CALIFORNIA PHYSICIANS' SERVICE DBA BLUE SHIELD OF CALIFORNIA'S ANSWER TO PLAINTIFFS' COMPLAINT

STIPULATION AND PROTECTIVE ORDER

8/29/2018: STIPULATION AND PROTECTIVE ORDER

Motion re:

1/11/2019: Motion re:

Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

1/23/2019: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

Minute Order

2/13/2019: Minute Order

Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

2/27/2019: Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore

Minute Order

3/7/2019: Minute Order

Ex Parte Application

3/26/2019: Ex Parte Application

Certificate of Mailing for

3/26/2019: Certificate of Mailing for

Notice

4/2/2019: Notice

Request for Judicial Notice

4/3/2019: Request for Judicial Notice

Minute Order

4/4/2019: Minute Order

Order

4/19/2019: Order

Certificate of Mailing for

4/23/2019: Certificate of Mailing for

Declaration

5/9/2019: Declaration

Notice

5/29/2019: Notice

138 More Documents Available

 

Docket Entries

  • 06/21/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Compel (Deposition) - Not Held - Rescheduled by Court

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  • 06/10/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Jury Trial - Not Held - Continued - Party's Motion

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  • 06/05/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Compel Discovery (not "Further Discovery") - Not Held - Rescheduled by Court

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  • 06/04/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Seal (Documents related to plaintiff's motion to compel deposition (Res ID1814)) - Held - Motion Denied

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  • 06/04/2019
  • Order Appointing Court Approved Reporter as Official Reporter Pro Tempore (Jamie Onuki, CSR#13904); Filed by California Physicians' Service Erroneously Sued As Blue Shield of California (Defendant)

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  • 06/04/2019
  • Minute Order ( (Hearing on Motion to Seal Documents related to plaintiff's mo...)); Filed by Clerk

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  • 05/31/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Bifurcate ((Res ID 9106 - filed 3/13/2019)) - Held - Motion Granted

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  • 05/31/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Seal (- to file Certain Documents Under Seal (Res ID4688)) - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 05/31/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Seal (Plaintiffs' Opposition to Defendant's Motion to Bifurcate (Res ID6117)) - Not Held - Vacated by Court

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  • 05/31/2019
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 73; Hearing on Motion to Compel Further Discovery Responses - Not Held - Clerical Error

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233 More Docket Entries
  • 03/27/2018
  • NOTICE OF MINUTE ORDER REGARDING PEREMPTORY CHALLENGE

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  • 03/21/2018
  • at 08:30 AM in Department 42; (Affidavit of Prejudice; Court makes order) -

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  • 03/21/2018
  • Minute Order

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  • 03/21/2018
  • Minute order entered: 2018-03-21 00:00:00; Filed by Clerk

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  • 03/14/2018
  • Challenge To Judicial Officer - Peremptory (170.6); Filed by Anna Barrette (Plaintiff); Landen Barrette (Plaintiff)

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  • 03/14/2018
  • Notice of Case Management Conference; Filed by Clerk

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  • 03/14/2018
  • NOTICE OF CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE & OSC RE PROOF OF SERVICE

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  • 03/14/2018
  • PEREMPORY CHALLENGE TO JUDICIAL OFFICER 170.6

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  • 03/09/2018
  • COMPLAINT AND DEMAND FOR JURY TRIAL 1. BREACH OF THC IMPLIED COVENANT OF GOOD FAITH AND FAIR DEALING;

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  • 03/09/2018
  • Complaint; Filed by null

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Tentative Rulings

Case Number: BC697564    Hearing Date: March 04, 2020    Dept: 73

3/4/20

Dept. 73

Rafael Ongkeko, Judge presiding

LANDEN BARRETTE, a minor by and through his Guardian ad Litem ANNA BARRETTE, et al. v. BLUE SHIELD OF CALIFORNIA (BC697564)

Counsel for plaintiffs/moving parties: Scott Glovsky; Ari Dybnis (L.O. Glovsky)

Counsel for defendant/[non]opposing party Blue Shield of California: John Fogarty; Sarah Gettings (Manatt, etc.)

Matters:

1. Plaintiffs’ motion to file certain documents under seal (filed 12/23/19)

2. Petition to approve compromise of pending action (minor, with special needs trust) (filed 12/24/19);

TENTATIVE RULING

1. Plaintiffs’ motion to seal the Petition is GRANTED. The court also orders the unredacted version of the Order approving the compromise be sealed and a redacted version be filed in its place.

2. Re minor’s compromise: SUBJECT TO HEARING AND PERSONAL APPEARANCE THEREON by the guardian ad litem/Plaintiff (CRC 7.952(a), the Petitioner’s unopposed petition (filed 12/24/19) to approve minor’s compromise of pending action, the court finds that the settlement is reasonable, and, based thereon, approves and GRANTS the petition. CRC 7.950. Subject to the court appearance, the Court also approves the terms of the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust, which complies with all applicable legal requirements.

The court makes the following findings which shall be part of the Order approving the Petition:

a. That the minor or person with a disability has a disability that substantially impairs the individual’s ability to provide for the individual’s own care or custody and constitutes a substantial handicap.

b. That the minor or person with a disability is likely to have special needs that will not be met without the trust.

c. That money to be paid to the trust does not exceed the amount that appears reasonably necessary to meet the special needs of the minor or person with a disability.

d. See discussion below for orders re the Special Needs Trust. The Court will sets an OSC to ensure compliance with the LASC filing requirements for _____________.

Discussion

Motion to seal

On December 23, 2019, Plaintiffs filed their “motion to file certain documents under seal” connected to their Petition to approve minor’s compromise.

Pursuant to California Rules of Court, rules 2.550 and 2.551, Plaintiffs seek an order to seal certain information from the petition to approve minor’s compromise. While only certain information relating to the confidential settlement agreement is sought to be redacted, Plaintiffs have filed a public version with all the redactions and have lodged conditionally under seal the unredacted petition.

Specifically, Plaintiffs seek to seal the settlement amount because, among other reasons, sealing such information is a required confidential condition in the settlement. The redactions also reflect sensitive medical and personal financial information. Moreover, Defendant made it clear that the confidentiality of the settlement amount was a significant factor motivating Defendant’s decision to settle the case and was required for the settlement to go forward.

Legal Standard

California Rules of Court, rules 2.550 and 2.551 relate to “records sealed or proposed to be sealed by court order,” and “record” is defined as “all or a portion of a document, paper, exhibit, transcript, or other thing filed or lodged with the court.” (Cal. Rules Court, rule 2.550(a)(1), (b)(1).)

Generally, court records are presumed to be open unless confidentiality is required by law. (Cal. Rules of Court, rule 2.550(c).) If the presumption of access applies, the court may order that a record be filed under seal “if it expressly finds facts that establish:

1) There exists an overriding interest that overcomes the right of public access to the record;

2) The overriding interest supports sealing the record;

3) A substantial probability exists that the overriding interest will be prejudiced if the record is not sealed;

4) The proposed sealing is narrowly tailored; and

5) No less restrictive means exist to achieve the overriding interest."

(Id., rule 2.550(d).) These findings embody constitutional requirements for a request to seal court records, protecting the First Amendment right of public access to civil trials. (E.g., People v. Jackson (2005) 128 Cal.App.4th 1009, 1026-1027 [in determining whether to seal records, courts must weigh constitutional requirements for disclosure against such factors as privacy rights].)

The moving party bears the burden to overcome the presumption that court records are open to public access. (Cal. Rules of Court, rule 2.550(c).) “[W]ithout a clear enumeration of specific facts alleged to be worthy of the extraordinary measure of maintaining our records under seal, there is simply no basis to conclude that unsealing the records will actually infringe any interest of plaintiff's or inflict any harm on it.” (HB Fuller Co. v. Doe (2007) 151 Cal.App.4th 879, 898.)

Merits

The court has read and considered Plaintiffs’ motion, and has also reviewed the unredacted original lodged with the court conditionally under seal. The petition and all of its attachments and accompanying declarations support Plaintiffs’ sealing request. The settlement terms and medical information sought to be redacted are needed to protect Plaintiffs’ privacy rights. The redaction of the settlement amount was a prerequisite to Defendant’s agreement to settle, and the court agrees that given the public policy in encouraging settlements and acting in the best interests of a minor with a severe health condition, as here, there is an overriding interest that supports the sealing of such information. The court finds substantial prejudice were the petition to be denied because the evidence shows that parties would not have otherwise settled this case and the Plaintiffs would have been deprived of the benefits of a settlement.

Regarding the specific information to be sealed, Plaintiffs claim that they seek to seal/redact only the settlement amount and some of its various components. This amount includes amounts paid to others, including attorney’s fees. Plaintiffs also seek to redact the amounts of the summary of costs incurred by his attorneys. (See Attachment 4A at ¶ 31.) Plaintiffs do not seek to seal the amount for reimbursements of expenses. The court finds that this proposed sealed information is narrowly tailored to advance the overriding interests and is the least restrictive means to achieve them.

Plaintiffs also seek to seal the account number of Plaintiffs’ health information, checking account and the last four digits of a Social Security Number. (See attachments 9, 14c.) Although not explicitly addressed by the motion, most likely because they are required to be kept confidential by other law (CRC 2.550(a)(2), this information is appropriate to be sealed/redacted as well. (CRC 1.201)

The court grants Plaintiffs’ motion to seal the unredacted version of the petition and file a redacted version instead. A proposed order has been lodged which the court intends to sign. Plaintiffs are directed to cooperate with court staff so as to comply with the procedural requirements of sealing pursuant to the court’s electronic filing system.

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Petition to approve minor’s compromise; proposed special needs trust

Petitioner: Anna Barrette (parent), Guardian ad litem

Attorney: Scott C. Glovsky

Beneficiary: Landen Barrette

Age 4 (DOB 2/4/2016)

Male

Settlement:

Gross: [Petition Redacted]

Net: [Petition Redacted]

FACTUAL BACKGROUND:

This is a Petition To Approve Compromise Of Pending Action Of A Minor filed 12/24/2019 (the “Petition”).

Petitioner alleges Landen Barrette's treatment with Spinraza for spinal muscular atrophy caused physical injury, including permanent loss of motor neurons and muscle strength. (Petition, p. 2, para 6.) Petitioner contends the injury left Landen Barrette with permanent loss of muscle tone and delayed improvements to his condition. (Petition, p. 3, para 9.c.)

The net settlement proceeds are redacted in the petition. (Petition, p. 6, para 16.) At paragraph 19.b, Petitioner alleges there is no guardianship of the estate of the minor person with a disability, and requests that a portion of the net settlement proceeds be invested in a single-premium deferred annuity, with a portion paid to the trustee of a special needs trust for the benefit of the minor.

Petitioner has provided at Attachment 19b(4)(i) a copy of the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust. A special needs trust generally is used to preserve assets for the use of a disabled beneficiary without rendering him or her ineligible for needs-based public benefits (e.g., Medi-Cal). A beneficiary typically will not lose eligibility for public benefits so long as the trust complies with 42 U.S.C. 1396(d)(4)(A).

Merits/findings:

The Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust complies with all applicable provisions of California Rule of Court 7.903 and Los Angeles County Local Rules 4.116 and 4.117. The trust meets the requirements of 42 U.S.C. 1396(d)(4)(A).

Proposed order: The proposed order is incomplete, and requires revisions.

Petitioner provided a proposed order relating to the initial 1/22/2020 hearing date. The proposed order requires the following revisions:

· The order must be updated to reflect the date the petition was heard and granted (i.e., the continued hearing date of 3/4/2020).

· The order must contain 100% of the text of the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust. The order alleges a copy of the special needs trust is attached, but no such attachment exists.

· The order must specify that the Court authorizes the creation of the trust. Petitioner has checked box 7.c(2)(b), but has omitted the language creating the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust and the amount to be funded in the trust. This language should be set forth on Attachment 7.c(2)(b).

· Paragraph 9 should be unchecked, as Petitioner will not execute the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust. The trust will instead be created by the order, on Attachment 7.c(2)(b), as specified above.

· Petitioner must check both boxes at paragraph 12, and must set forth all additional orders on an Attachment 12. The order currently sets forth additional orders on a loose sheet of paper which is not labeled, using paragraph numbers that are duplicative of those in Judicial Council form MC-351.

· The order must expressly include the filings required by Probate Code 3604(b): (1) That the minor or person with a disability has a disability that substantially impairs the individual’s ability to provide for the individual’s own care or custody and constitutes a substantial handicap.

(2) That the minor or person with a disability is likely to have special needs that will not be met without the trust.

(3) That money to be paid to the trust does not exceed the amount that appears reasonably necessary to meet the special needs of the minor or person with a disability.

These findings may be set forth on Attachment 12.

· The order should direct trustee to file her first account no later than 15 months from the date of the order establishing the trust. This language should be set forth on Attachment 12.

The proposed order properly directs the trustee to file within 30 days LASC Form PRO-044 (Notice of Commencement of Proceedings for a Court Supervised Trust) in the probate division to obtain a probate case number for the trust.

The Court sets an OSC to ensure compliance with this filing requirement for: ______________.

CONCLUSION:

Subject to the court appearance, the Court approves the terms of the Landen Barrette 2019 Special Needs Trust, which complies with all applicable legal requirements.

The Court makes the following findings:

1. That the minor or person with a disability has a disability that substantially impairs the individual’s ability to provide for the individual’s own care or custody and constitutes a substantial handicap.

2. That the minor or person with a disability is likely to have special needs that will not be met without the trust.

3. That money to be paid to the trust does not exceed the amount that appears reasonably necessary to meet the special needs of the minor or person with a disability.