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United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
October 22, 2015, Argued; May 10, 2016, Decided
Docket No. 15-1072
[*51] KEARSE, Circuit Judge:
Plaintiffs Marissa Carter et al., individually and as representatives of putative classes of persons alleging that they were overcharged for copies of their medical records by defendants Rochester General Hospital ("RGH"), Unity Hospital of Rochester ("Unity"), F.F. Thompson Hospital, Inc. ("Thompson"), and HealthPort Technologies, LLC ("HealthPort"), appeal from a judgment of the United States District Court for the Western District of New York, Frank P. Geraci, Jr., Chief Judge, dismissing their complaint ("Complaint") for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The Complaint alleged principally that RGH, Unity, and Thompson (collectively [**3] the "Hospitals"), through their agent HealthPort, charged plaintiffs more than the statutory maximum fees allowed by N.Y. Pub. Health Law §§ 18(2)(d) and (e) (McKinney 2012) for providing copies of plaintiffs' medical records. The district court granted defendants' motions to dismiss the action pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1) on the ground that the Complaint alleged that the requested records had been paid for by plaintiffs' attorneys, ruling that the Complaint therefore did not plead injury-in-fact to the plaintiffs themselves and that plaintiffs lacked standing under Article III of the Constitution to bring this action. Plaintiffs challenge that ruling. For the reasons that follow, we conclude that, in light of ordinary principles of agency, the Complaint's allegations that each named plaintiff "through [her or his] counsel" "paid" the charges demanded by defendants for providing the records and that "Plaintiffs" bore "the ultimate expense" for those records, plausibly alleged that plaintiffs themselves were injured by the claimed violations of New York law. Accordingly, we conclude that the district court erred in dismissing the action pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1) for lack of standing.
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822 F.3d 47 *; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 8565 **
MARISSA CARTER, EVELYN GRYS, BRUCE CURRIER, SHARON KONING, SUE BEEHLER, MARSHA MANCUSO, JACLYN CUTHBERTSON, as individuals and as representatives of the classes, Plaintiffs-Appellants, - v. - HEALTHPORT TECHNOLOGIES, LLC, THE ROCHESTER GENERAL HOSPITAL, THE UNITY HOSPITAL OF ROCHESTER, F.F. THOMPSON HOSPITAL, INC., Defendants-Appellees.
Subsequent History: Motion granted by, in part, Motion denied by, in part, Injunction denied by, Dismissed by, in part Carter v. CIOX Health, LLC, 260 F. Supp. 3d 277, 2017 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 82097 (W.D.N.Y., May 26, 2017)
Motion granted by Carter v. Ciox Health, LLC, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 215144 (W.D.N.Y., Dec. 21, 2018)
Prior History: Appeal from a judgment of the United States District Court for the Western District of New York, Frank P. Geraci, Jr., Chief Judge, dismissing plaintiffs' class action complaint, see 28 U.S.C. § 1332(d), which alleged that defendants charged excessive fees for providing copies of plaintiffs' medical records, in violation of N.Y. Pub. Health Law §§ 18(2)(d) and (e) (McKinney 2012) and N.Y. Gen. Bus. Law §§ 349(a) and (h) (McKinney 2004). The district court granted defendants' motions to dismiss pursuant to Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1) on the ground that, because the complaint that the plaintiffs themselves suffered actual injury from the alleged overcharges and thus failed to show that plaintiffs had Article III standing to bring this action. See 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43058, 2015 WL 1508851 (Mar. 31, 2015). We conclude that, because the complaint alleged that each named plaintiff "through [her or his] counsel" had "paid" the charges demanded for the records, and that the "ultimate expense" was borne by the plaintiffs, the complaint plausibly alleged that plaintiffs, as principals acting through their agents, had been injured by the alleged overcharges. The district court therefore erred in dismissing the complaint pursuant to Rule 12(b)(1) [**1] for lack of standing.
Carter v. HealthPort Techs., LLC, 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 43058 (W.D.N.Y., Mar. 31, 2015)
Disposition: Vacated and remanded.
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Civil Procedure, Responses, Defenses, Demurrers & Objections, Motions to Dismiss, Constitutional Law, The Judiciary, Case or Controversy, Standing, Standing, Elements, Appeals, Standards of Review, De Novo Review, Clearly Erroneous Review, Business & Corporate Law, Agency Relationships, Types, Attorney & Client, Business & Corporate Compliance, Medical Treatment, Healthcare Law, Medical Treatment, Jurisdiction, Diversity Jurisdiction, Citizenship, Citizenship, Business Entities, Special Proceedings, Class Actions, Class Action Fairness Act