Case: State of Connecticut Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons With Disabilities v. Connecticut

3:06-cv-00179 | U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut

Filed Date: Feb. 6, 2006

Case Ongoing

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On February 6, 2006, the State of Connecticut Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons With Disabilities (an independent State agency charged with advocating for persons with disabilities), along with several persons with mental disabilities residing in nursing facilities, filed this lawsuit against the State of Connecticut, its Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, its Department of Public Health, and its Department of Social Services in the United States District Court for …

On February 6, 2006, the State of Connecticut Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons With Disabilities (an independent State agency charged with advocating for persons with disabilities), along with several persons with mental disabilities residing in nursing facilities, filed this lawsuit against the State of Connecticut, its Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services, its Department of Public Health, and its Department of Social Services in the United States District Court for the District of Connecticut. Bringing their claims under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, the plaintiffs claimed that the defendants were violating these two acts by warehousing and segregating mentally ill patients in three nursing facilities that were either locked or severely restricted. The plaintiffs alleged these patients desired community-based treatment instead.

On March 31, 2010, the district court (Judge Alvin W. Thompson) denied the defendants' motions to dismiss and certified the case as a class action. The class consisted of persons with mental illness who desired to and were capable of receiving community-based treatment and were institutionalized in Chelsea Place Care Center, Bidwell Care Center, or West Rock Health Care Center or were at risk of entry into these facilities. 706 F. Supp. 2d 266.

Discovery proceeded throughout the rest of 2010 and into 2011. In April 2011, Judge Thompson granted the parties' joint motion to stay the case so that they could try to negotiate a settlement. For the next three years, the parties negotiated.

On June 17, 2014, the parties reached a settlement agreement, which was approved by Judge Thompson on July 2.

The settlement agreement required the State to ensure that all class members who were eligible for and desired community-based services in a community-based setting were afforded those services. The State was also required to explain the benefits of community-based services and settings to all class members. Moreover, even for those class members who chose to remain in the nursing homes (rather than take advantage of a community-based setting), the State would continue to discuss and recommend community-based settings with them. The parties also agreed to the appointment of a remedial expert to ensure the State's compliance with the settlement agreement. The court was to retain jurisdiction over the case for four years to ensure compliance.

The State also agreed to pay $1.3 million in attorneys' fees to the plaintiffs.

Starting in 2014, the appointed Remedial Expert filed quarterly status reports to the district court outlining the State's progress toward compliance with the settlement agreement.

The court's jurisdiction was scheduled to end in July 2018. However, in January 2017, new class members, not subject to protections of the original settlement agreement, were identified. While defendants fully implemented and accomplished each benchmark within the timelines specified and were in compliance with the Settlement Agreement as to all other Class Members, the newly identified class members did not directly receive the specific protections of the settlement agreement. Thus the parties agreed to extend the jurisdiction with regards to these newly discovered class members only, for periods of six to eighteen months specific to the new class members, so that the defendants could give them the benefits of the settlement agreement. Quarterly reports were to continue through the extended period for the new class members. The court approved these provisions on June 25, 2018.

The original portions of the Settlement Agreement terminated pursuant to their terms on July 2, 2018. As of this update, the most recent status report was entered on April 22, 2019. The case is ongoing.

Summary Authors

Michael Perry (1/25/2011)

Andrew Junker (10/22/2014)

Lauren Latterell Powell (10/21/2017)

Michael Beech (8/3/2020)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4880754/parties/state-of-ct-ofc-of-protection-advocacy-for-persons-with-disabilities-v/


Judge(s)

Martinez, Donna F. (Connecticut)

Thompson, Alvin W. (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Alisberg, Nancy B. (Connecticut)

Allen, Michael Gerhart (District of Columbia)

Arnett, Jennifer (New York)

Bossing, Lewis (District of Columbia)

Bower, Karen A. (District of Columbia)

Burnim, Ira Abraham (District of Columbia)

Curnin, Kevin J. (New York)

Cushman, Catherine E. (Connecticut)

Judge(s)

Martinez, Donna F. (Connecticut)

Thompson, Alvin W. (Connecticut)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Alisberg, Nancy B. (Connecticut)

Allen, Michael Gerhart (District of Columbia)

Arnett, Jennifer (New York)

Bossing, Lewis (District of Columbia)

Bower, Karen A. (District of Columbia)

Burnim, Ira Abraham (District of Columbia)

Curnin, Kevin J. (New York)

Cushman, Catherine E. (Connecticut)

Fiazuddin, Ajaz (Connecticut)

Krauss, Jill (New York)

Pasquale, Ken (New York)

Penn, Andrew S. (District of Columbia)

Strauss, Joseph E. (New York)

Walsman, Danielle A. (New York)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Barber, Hugh (Connecticut)

Hoell, Jacqueline S. (Connecticut)

Lynch, Richard J. (Connecticut)

McGovern, Rosemary Miller (Connecticut)

Ring, Thomas (Connecticut)

Salton, Henry A. (Connecticut)

Shapiro, Daniel R. (Connecticut)

Other Attorney(s)

Maisels, Amanda (District of Columbia)

Nash, Lauren M. (Connecticut)

Pellegrino, Bernard A. (Connecticut)

Starble, Jonathan M. (Connecticut)

Thidemann, Anne F. (Connecticut)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket (PACER)

Feb. 21, 2019 Docket
1

Complaint

Feb. 6, 2006 Complaint
123

First Amended Complaint

Sept. 9, 2008 Complaint
174

Order and Opinion [Denying defendants' motions to dismiss and granting plaintiffs' motion for class certification]

706 F.Supp.2d 266

March 31, 2010 Order/Opinion
188

ORDER RE MOTION TO AMEND

State of CT Ofc of Protection & Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities v. Connecticut

June 25, 2010 Order/Opinion
303-11

Settlement Agreement

State of Ct. Office of Protection and Advocacy for Persons with Disabilities v. State of Connecticut

June 17, 2014 Settlement Agreement
310

Order Granting Class Settlement

July 2, 2014 Order/Opinion
361

Consent Order Modifying Settlement Agreement

June 25, 2018 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Office of Protection and Advocacy v. State of Conneticut

The Bazelon Center

Office of Protection and Advocacy v. State of Connecticut alleges that more than 200 people with mental illnesses are “needlessly segregated and inappropriately warehoused” in three Connecticut nursi… Jan. 1, 2017 http://www.bazelon.org/opa-v-ct/

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4880754/state-of-ct-ofc-of-protection-advocacy-for-persons-with-disabilities-v/

Last updated May 11, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
100

ORDER denying plaintiff's 81 Motion to Compel and 84 Motion to Compel without prejudice to refiling after a ruling on the pending motions to dismiss. See attached ruling. Signed by Judge Donna F. Martinez on 7/3/07. (Turner, M.)

July 3, 2007 RECAP
174

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 129 Motion to Certify Class; denying 140 Motion to Dismiss; denying 141 Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Jurisdiction. Signed by Judge Alvin W. Thompson on 03/31/2010. (Jean-Louis, C)

March 31, 2010 RECAP
354

Notice of Appearance

May 10, 2018 PACER
355

Withdraw as Attorney

May 10, 2018 PACER
357

Status Report

May 14, 2018 PACER
359

Settlement

1 Proposed Consent Order Modifying Settlement Agreement

View on PACER

2 Exhibit A to Proposed Consent Order Modifying Settlement Agreement

View on PACER

June 12, 2018 PACER
360

Status Report

June 18, 2018 PACER
361

Order on Motion for Settlement

June 25, 2018 PACER
363

Notice of Appearance

June 26, 2018 PACER
364

Withdraw as Attorney

June 27, 2018 PACER
370

Notice (Other)

April 19, 2019 PACER

Order

April 22, 2019 PACER
372

Status Report

Oct. 16, 2019 PACER

Order

Oct. 28, 2019 PACER
374

Settlement Agreement

1 Exhibit A

View on PACER

Jan. 23, 2020 PACER

Order

Jan. 24, 2020 PACER
376

Status Report

Jan. 27, 2020 PACER

Order

Jan. 28, 2020 PACER

State / Territory: Connecticut

Case Type(s):

Public Benefits/Government Services

Special Collection(s):

Olmstead Cases

Key Dates

Filing Date: Feb. 6, 2006

Case Ongoing: Yes

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

State Agency suing on behalf of a class of persons with mental illnesses who are housed in various nursing homes or in danger of being housed in them rather than being provided with community based treatment.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

State Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations

Bazelon Center

Relman, Dane & Colfax

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: No

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

State of Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services (Hartford, Hartford), State

State of Connecticut Department of Public Health (Hartford, Hartford), State

State of Connecticut (Hartford, Hartford), State

State of Connecticut Department of Social Services (Hartford, Hartford), State

Defendant Type(s):

Hospital/Health Department

Case Details

Causes of Action:

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), 42 U.S.C. §§ 12111 et seq.

Section 504 (Rehabilitation Act), 29 U.S.C. § 701

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Attorneys fees

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Amount Defendant Pays: 1.3 million

Order Duration: 2014 - None

Content of Injunction:

Comply with advertising/recruiting requirements

Discrimination Prohibition

Monitoring

Reasonable Accommodation

Reporting

Required disclosure

Issues

General:

Classification / placement

Confinement/isolation

Deinstitutionalization/decarceration

Government Services

Habilitation (training/treatment)

Individualized planning

Placement in mental health facilities

Public benefits (includes, e.g., in-state tuition, govt. jobs)

Reasonable Accommodations

Recreation / Exercise

Rehabilitation

Discrimination-basis:

Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)

Disability:

disability, unspecified

Integrated setting

Least restrictive environment

Mental impairment

P&A Associational Standing

Mental Disability:

Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified

Mental Illness, Unspecified

Medical/Mental Health:

Intellectual disability/mental illness dual diagnosis

Medicare eligibility determination

Mental health care, general

Mental health care, unspecified

Type of Facility:

Government-run

Benefit Source:

Medicaid