Attorneys for five Florida hospitals have sued the Cayman Islands National Insurance Company for unpaid medical bills, the third such lawsuit in as many months.
The suit, filed last week in United States federal court in Miami, accuses CINICO of not paying bills for overseas treatments. The suit does not specify how much CINICO owes, but states that as an example, it has in excess of $600,000 in outstanding bills from North Shore Medical Center.
The earlier suits, filed in November, accused CINICO of not paying more than $1.5 million in hospital bills. One of those suits has been settled and, according to an email from CINICO’s chief executive officer Lonny Tibbetts, the other suit has been withdrawn.
Mr. Tibbetts, who was unavailable to comment on the latest lawsuit, said in November that the insurance company lost track of many unpaid bills when it canceled a contract with Simplifi, a U.S. company hired to handle claims and payments. Simplifi sued CINICO in 2013 and accused it of not giving written notice before canceling the contract. That lawsuit continues in a different U.S. federal court.
An email from Mr. Tibbetts, referring to the November lawsuits, states: “Between July 2013 and December 2014, we managed to pay the majority of our claims, but unfortunately a number of claims fell through the cracks and today are the primary source of these actions.”
Though the unpaid bills in the new lawsuit are from the same time period as the previous suits, CINICO representatives could not comment on whether these hospitals face the same issue with lost bills as the ones that sued last year.
In November, Mr. Tibbetts said CINICO is relying on hospitals to get in touch with the insurance company to collect. He said, “Normally, when you owe somebody money, they knock on your door and say ‘Hey dude, you owe us this money.’”
In addition to the North Share Medical Center, plaintiffs in the latest lawsuit include the Florida Medical Center, Good Samaritan Medical Center, St. Mary’s Medical Center and West Boca Medical Center. All five hospitals are in south Florida in or between Miami and West Palm Beach.