DALLAS — Did you receive a postcard in the mail about a $2.67 billion settlement involving Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance? Many are asking online whether these postcards are legitimate and if the settlement is real.
Is the Blue Cross Blue Shield settlement real?
• Blue Cross Blue Shield
• United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama Southern Division
In October 2020, Blue Cross Blue Shield reached a $2.67 billion settlement in class-action antitrust lawsuit. A judge has not given final approval to the settlement.
WHAT WE FOUND
This settlement stemmed from an Alabama class-action antitrust lawsuit titled In re: Blue Cross Blue Shield Antitrust Litigation MDL 2406.
Blue Cross reached the settlement on Oct. 16, 2020 with the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association (“BCBSA”) and Settling Individual Blue Plans.
In the class-action suit, plaintiffs alleged that Blue Cross “violated antitrust laws by entering into an agreement not to compete with each other and to limit competition among themselves in selling health insurance and administrative services for health insurance.” The plaintiffs argued that Blue Cross was able to charge higher rates for plans through the practice of limiting competition.
Blue Cross denied the allegations saying the insurance provider’s practices reduced healthcare costs and gave customers more access to care.
If given final approval, the settlement will create a $2.67 billion settlement funds and would become one of the largest health care settlements in U.S. history.
According to the terms of the settlement, about $1.9 billion will go to eligible subscribers who file claims. The remaining $700 million will go to the case’s attorneys.
Blue Cross agreed to make changes to business practices that they say will increase marketplace competition.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
If you were covered by Blue Cross between February of 2008 and October of 2020, you may be eligible for a settlement payment.
The Court said two settlement classes are included in this case―a Damages Class and an Injunctive Relief Class.
You may be eligible if you are an individual subscriber, insured group or self-funded account within these two classes.
Class Members who submit valid claims may receive a cash payment from the net settlement fund.
CAN I OPT OUT?
If you exclude yourself or opt out of the settlement, you have the option to file a separate lawsuit against Blue Cross Blue Shield. If you do this, you will not receive any money from the settlement.
You can also object to the settlement by writing a letter to the court. You can object only if you do not exclude yourself from the Settlement Classes.
If you want to opt out or object, you must do so by July 28, 2021.
If you do nothing, you will remain a member of the two settlement classes and be bound by the settlement. However, if you had been entitled to share in the settlement proceeds, you will not get a payment.
To see if you qualify and file a claim, you need to visit bcbssettlement.com and click on the "File A Claim" tab at the top of the page.
To make a claim or receive a payment, you must file a claim online or by mail postmarked by Nov. 5, 2021.
Claims may be submitted online or by mail to:
Blue Cross Blue Shield Settlement
c/o JND Legal Administration
PO Box 91390
Seattle, WA 98111