Case: Ruth L. v. White

2:90-cv-05562 | U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

Filed Date: Aug. 27, 1990

Closed Date: 1996

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On August 27, 1990, several individuals with intellectual disabilities, represented by attorneys for the Disabilities Law Project, filed a class action lawsuit against the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare [DPW] pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, challenging their continued confinement in state institutions. Plaintiffs sought to enjoin DPW from denying persons with intellectual disabilities appropriate treatment and placement in commun…

On August 27, 1990, several individuals with intellectual disabilities, represented by attorneys for the Disabilities Law Project, filed a class action lawsuit against the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare [DPW] pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 in U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, challenging their continued confinement in state institutions. Plaintiffs sought to enjoin DPW from denying persons with intellectual disabilities appropriate treatment and placement in community-based programs. Plaintiffs' complaint asserted violations of their substantive and procedural due process rights guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment; Title XIX of the Social Security Act, 42 U.S.C. §§1396a et. seq.; and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. § 794.

Plaintiffs moved for class certification on April 8, 1991. The District Court (Judge Charles R. Weiner) denied the motion, with leave to renew it after the completion of discovery. Plaintiffs' motion for a preliminary injunction was similarly denied.

Settlement negotiations followed and the parties ultimately resolved the case. The Court approved the parties' Settlement Agreement on July 9, 1992. The Agreement stipulated to the certification of a class of persons "with a primary or exclusive diagnosis of mental retardation who are institutionalized in state hospitals for persons with mental illness contrary to professional judgment. " The Agreement called for the PDW to place class members into appropriate community-based programs. The case was placed on the Court's civil suspense list pending compliance with the Agreement. Plaintiffs' claim for attorneys' fees was resolved under a separate agreement.

On April 11, 1996, the District Court entered a final stipulation and order dismissing the case without prejudice.

We have no further information on this matter.

Summary Authors

Dan Dalton (4/6/2007)

People


Judge(s)

Weiner, Charles R. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Gold, Stephen F. (Pennsylvania)

Meek, Robert W. (Pennsylvania)

Shane, Ilene W. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Fredricks, Laura (Pennsylvania)

Kramer, Barry N. (Pennsylvania)

Ulan, Howard (Pennsylvania)

Judge(s)

Weiner, Charles R. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Gold, Stephen F. (Pennsylvania)

Meek, Robert W. (Pennsylvania)

Shane, Ilene W. (Pennsylvania)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Fredricks, Laura (Pennsylvania)

Kramer, Barry N. (Pennsylvania)

Ulan, Howard (Pennsylvania)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

Docket [PACER]

April 11, 1996 Docket
3

Complaint

Sept. 4, 1990 Complaint

Correspondence

June 29, 1992 Correspondence
19

Settlement Agreement & Stipulation

July 9, 1992 Settlement Agreement
23

Supplemental Settlement Stipulation

June 27, 1994 Settlement Agreement
24

Final Stipulation

April 11, 1996 Settlement Agreement

Resources

Title Description External URL

Docket

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

ECF Number Description Date Link
1

MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS BY PLAINTIFF RUTH L., PLAINTIFF EUGENE M., PLAINTIFF JOHN H., DECLARATION IN SUPPORT OF PLFF'S MOTION TO PROCEED. (sb) (Entered: 08/27/1990)

Aug. 27, 1990
2

ORDER GRANTING [1-1] MOTION TO PROCEED IN FORMA PAUPERIS ( SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER ) 9/5/90 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 09/05/1990)

Sept. 4, 1990
3

Complaint. (fe) (Entered: 09/05/1990)

Sept. 4, 1990

Summons(es) issued Forwarded to: counsel 9/5/90 (fe) (Entered: 09/05/1990)

Sept. 4, 1990
4

ORDER, APPOINTING SPECIAL PROCESS SERVER STEPHEN F. GOLD, ESQ. TO SERVE THE SUMMONS & COMPLAINT UPON DEFT. ( SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER ) 9/5/90 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 09/05/1990)

Sept. 4, 1990
5

ORDER, DISMISSING , CASE WITHOUT PREJUDICE. RESET SCHEDULING ORDER DEADLINES: TELEPHONE STATUS CONFERNECE BY 9:30 11/19/90 () 9/27/90 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 09/27/1990)

Sept. 26, 1990

Case closed (kv) (Entered: 10/03/1990)

Sept. 26, 1990
6

MOTION by PLAINTIFF JOHN H., PLAINTIFF EUGENE M., PLAINTIFF RUTH L. TO CERTIFY CLASS ACTION MEMORANDUM, CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE. (ph) (Entered: 10/09/1990)

Oct. 9, 1990
7

Answer to Complaint by DEFENDANT ALBERT DIDARIO, DEFENDANT JOHN F. WHITE JR. (Attorney LAURA FREDERICKS, BARRY N. KRAMER), (fe) (Entered: 10/17/1990)

Oct. 17, 1990
9

STIPULATION AND ORDER, DEFENDANT'S RESPONSE TO MOTION RESET TO 11/5/90 FOR [6-1] MOTION TO CERTIFY CLASS ACTION (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R.) 11/01/90 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 11/01/1990)

Oct. 31, 1990
10

ORDER DENYING PLAINTIFFS' [6-1] MOTION TO CERTIFY CLASS ACTION, WITH LEAVE TO RENEW AFTER ALL DISCOVERY IS COMPLETED. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 4/8/91 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 04/08/1991)

April 8, 1991
11

STIPULATION OF CONFIDENTIALITY WITH COURT'S APPROVAL. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 6/12/91 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 06/12/1991)

June 11, 1991
12

MOTION BY PLAINTIFF JOHN H., PLAINTIFF EUGENE M., PLAINTIFF RUTH L. FOR LEAVE TO RENEW MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION , MEMORANDUM, CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE. (fe) (Entered: 10/11/1991)

Oct. 11, 1991
13

MOTION BY PLAINTIFF JOHN H., PLAINTIFF EUGENE M., PLAINTIFF RUTH L. FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION , MEMORANDUM, CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE. (fe) (Entered: 10/11/1991)

Oct. 11, 1991
14

MOTION TO INTERVENE BY MOVANT PETER C. , MEMORANDUM, CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE. (fe) (Entered: 10/11/1991)

Oct. 11, 1991
15

Request for evidentiary hearing and oral argument by PLAINTIFF JOHN H., PLAINTIFF EUGENE M., PLAINTIFF RUTH L. on PLAINTIFFS' [13-1] MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION. (fe) (Entered: 10/18/1991)

Oct. 18, 1991
16

ORDER GRANTING [14-1] MOTION TO INTERVENE BY MOVANT PETER C. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 10/24/91 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 10/24/1991)

Oct. 23, 1991
17

ORDER THAT PLAINTIFFS' [13-1] MOTION FOR PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION IS DENIED WITH LEAVE TO RENEW IF THIS MATTER ULTIMATELY DOES NOT SETTLE. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 11/5/91 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 11/05/1991)

Nov. 4, 1991
18

ORDER THAT PLAINTIFFS' [12-1] MOTION FOR LEAVE TO RENEW MOTION FOR CLASS CERTIFICATION DENIED WITH LEAVE TO RENEW IF THIS MATTER ULTIMATELY DOES NOT SETTLE. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 11/5/91 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 11/05/1991)

Nov. 4, 1991
20

STIPULATION AND ORDER ON ATTORNEYS' FEES , ETC. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 12/1/92 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 12/01/1992)

Nov. 30, 1992
21

STIPULATION AND ORDER ON ATTORNEYS' FEES , ETC. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 12/2/92 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 12/02/1992)

Dec. 1, 1992
22

SECOND STIPULATION AND ORDER ON ATTORNEYS' FEES . (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER). 2/24/94 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 02/24/1994)

Feb. 24, 1994
23

SUPPLEMENTAL SETTLEMENT STIPULATION AND ORDER THAT THE FINAL DATE BY WHICH PLAINTIFFS' COUNSEL MAY IDENTIFY PERSONS WHO REASONABLY FIT THE CLASS DEFINIATION IS 9/30/94, ETC. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER). 6/28/94 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 06/28/1994)

June 27, 1994
24

FINAL STIPULATION AND ORDER THAT THIS MATTER IS HEREWITH DISMISSED WITHOUT PREJUDICE; PLFFS' COUNSEL MAY BE ENTITLED UNDER CERTAIN CIRCUMSTANCES TO ATTORNEYS' FEES FOR HOURS EXPENDED AFTER 11/1/92 TO THE EXTENT THAT THE LODESTAR FOR POST-11/1/92 WORK EXCEEDS $3,000 IN A 12 MONTH PERIOD, ETC. (SIGNED BY JUDGE CHARLES R. WEINER) 4/12/96 ENTERED AND COPIES MAILED. (fe) (Entered: 04/12/1996)

April 11, 1996

State / Territory: Pennsylvania

Case Type(s):

Intellectual Disability (Facility)

Key Dates

Filing Date: Aug. 27, 1990

Closing Date: 1996

Case Ongoing: No

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

All persons with a primary or exclusive diagnosis of mental retardation who are institutionalized in state hospitals for persons with mental illness contrary to professional judgment.

Attorney Organizations:

NDRN/Protection & Advocacy Organizations

Steve Gold

Public Interest Lawyer: Yes

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

Department of Public Welfare, State

Norristown State Hospital, State

Case Details

Causes of Action:

42 U.S.C. § 1983

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

Social Security (Title XX), 42 U.S.C. §§ 1397 et seq.

Constitutional Clause(s):

Due Process

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement

Source of Relief:

Settlement

Form of Settlement:

Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree

Content of Injunction:

Preliminary relief denied

Issues

General:

Classification / placement

Deinstitutionalization/decarceration

Habilitation (training/treatment)

Disability:

Integrated setting

Least restrictive environment

Mental Disability:

Intellectual/developmental disability, unspecified

Type of Facility:

Government-run