Case: Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare

3:09-cv-01112 | U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania

Filed Date: June 11, 2009

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On June 11, 2009, individuals with developmental disabilities and housed in state-run psychiatric institutions in Pennsylvania filed this class action against the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs claimed that Pennsylvania had failed to provide community-based treatment and habilitation services that would prevent them from being institutionalized. Some of the plaintiffs had diagnosed psychiatric …

On June 11, 2009, individuals with developmental disabilities and housed in state-run psychiatric institutions in Pennsylvania filed this class action against the state Department of Public Welfare (DPW) in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania. The plaintiffs claimed that Pennsylvania had failed to provide community-based treatment and habilitation services that would prevent them from being institutionalized. Some of the plaintiffs had diagnosed psychiatric disorders, while others were individuals with disabilities who claimed to be housed in psychiatric facilities even though they had no mental illness. The plaintiffs alleged that the Department of Public Welfare violated Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. They requested class certification, declaratory and injunctive relief, and attorneys' fees and costs.

On September 8, 2009, the court certified the class of individuals with developmental disabilities institutionalized in state psychiatric facilities and not subject to the jurisdiction of the criminal courts. The defendants moved to dismiss the complaint on September 17, 2009. Judge Thomas I. Vanaskie denied this motion on November 19, 2009.

On July 30, 2010, the parties submitted a settlement agreement, which was approved by Judge Christopher C. Conner on September 2, 2010. Pursuant to the agreement, DPW agreed to:

• assess each plaintiff's eligibility for Medicaid waiver services and develop individualized assessment plans;

• develop individualized community support plans for eligible individuals;

• ensure that individuals who are eligible for a community-based waiver program are not discharged to a personal care home;

• establish a review committee to determine which institutionalized individuals were eligible for release into the community;

• provide funding for additional services both in institutions and in the community;

• implement enhanced services in state hospitals;

• provide the plaintiffs with incident reports concerning class representatives or class members no later than five days after their occurrence; and

• issue status reports to the plaintiffs that contain funding updates (every 12 months) and updates on the discharge of class representatives and class members, as well as the admission of individuals to state hospitals (every six months).

The settlement agreement was set to terminate 90 days after the provision of community services to the last person identified as eligible for such services. The defendants agreed to pay the plaintiffs $210,000 for attorneys' fees, litigation expenses, and costs incurred. The docket reflects no further litigation in the case since December 2, 2010.

Summary Authors

Beth Kurtz (2/8/2013)

Eva Richardson (11/20/2018)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4945737/parties/jimmie-v-department-of-public-welfare-of-the-commonwealth-of-pennsylvania/


Judge(s)

Conner, Christopher C. (Pennsylvania)

Vanaskie, Thomas Ignatius (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Horowitz, Carol (Pennsylvania)

Meek, Robert W. (Pennsylvania)

Murphy, Mark J. (Pennsylvania)

Resnick, Robin (Pennsylvania)

Warshaw, Allen C. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Ulan, Howard (Pennsylvania)

Judge(s)

Conner, Christopher C. (Pennsylvania)

Vanaskie, Thomas Ignatius (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Horowitz, Carol (Pennsylvania)

Meek, Robert W. (Pennsylvania)

Murphy, Mark J. (Pennsylvania)

Resnick, Robin (Pennsylvania)

Warshaw, Allen C. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Ulan, Howard (Pennsylvania)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare

Dec. 2, 2010 Docket
1

Complaint

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

June 11, 2009 Complaint
14

Brief in Support of Plaintiffs' Unopposed Motion for Class Certification

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Sept. 2, 2009 Pleading / Motion / Brief
13

Plaintiff's Unopposed Motion for Class Certification

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Sept. 2, 2009 Pleading / Motion / Brief
17

Order

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Virginia

Sept. 8, 2009 Order/Opinion
19

Motion to Dismiss

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Sept. 17, 2009 Pleading / Motion / Brief
31

Order

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Nov. 19, 2009 Order/Opinion
41

Plaintiffs' Unopposed Motion for Preliminary Approval of the Proposed Class Action Settlement Agreement and for Approval of Class Notice

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

July 30, 2010 Pleading / Motion / Brief
41-4

Settlement Agreement

July 30, 2010 Settlement Agreement
47

Order

Jimmie v. Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Sept. 2, 2010 Order/Opinion

Resources

Title Description External URL

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/4945737/jimmie-v-department-of-public-welfare-of-the-commonwealth-of-pennsylvania/

Last updated May 12, 2022, 8 p.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link
57

ORDER granting pltfs' motion for attys' fees, litigation expenses & costs 50 , awarding pltfs' cnsl sum of $210,000... to be paid to Disability Rights Network of PA by 1/31/11, setting forth findings of fact & conclusions of law re: same. (See order for complete details.) Signed by Honorable Christopher C. Conner on 12/02/10. (ki)

Dec. 2, 2010 RECAP

State / Territory: Pennsylvania

Case Type(s):

Public Benefits/Government Services

Special Collection(s):

Olmstead Cases

Key Dates

Filing Date: June 11, 2009

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

Plaintiffs are individuals with developmental disabilities who reside in state psychiatric hospitals.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Attorney Organizations:

NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, State

Defendant Type(s):

Jurisdiction-wide

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

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

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

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Monetary Relief

Injunctive (or Injunctive-like) Relief

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: 210,000

Order Duration: 2010 - 2016

Content of Injunction:

Discrimination Prohibition

Monitoring

Reporting

Issues

General:

Deinstitutionalization/decarceration

Discharge & termination plans

Habilitation (training/treatment)

Individualized planning

Placement in mental health facilities

Reasonable Accommodations

Discrimination-basis:

Disability (inc. reasonable accommodations)

Disability:

disability, unspecified

Integrated setting

Least restrictive environment

Mental impairment

Mental Disability:

Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified

Mental Illness, Unspecified

Type of Facility:

Government-run

Benefit Source:

Medicaid