Hello. I am Peter Adler, Massachusetts counsel in this case, together with Andrew DeLaney appearing from New Jersey. We are writing to thank you very much for your donations and to update you about the status of the case.
We do really appreciate your generous donations to this litigation, whether large or small. This is a landmark case where we are trying to end Medicaid funding of circumcisions in Massachusetts. That would be a huge win. We are hopeful that a victory in Massachusetts would lead to victories in other states that allow taxpayers suits like this one.
Andrew and I are both billing our time at $150 per hour, but we are only billing for a fraction of our time. I have worked at least 500 hours on the case and Andrew has worked another 100 to 200 more. As a result, the hourly rate overall is very low.
SUPERIOR COURT CASE
We are really excited about the results so far. As Ron Goldman explained, MassHealth, the Massachusetts Medicaid agency, moved to dismiss the lawsuit. We filed a responsive brief; the state filed a reply; then we had oral argument before Judge Gordon in Suffolk Superior Court (via Zoom).
Judge Gordon ruled that taxpayers in Massachusetts have the right to proceed in Superior Court on their claim that it is unlawful under Massachusetts law: to use Medicaid to pay for circumcision; to fail to require proof of medical necessity; and to fail to establish an institution review board to review those payment. He then referred the case to the Massachusetts Court of Appeals to review his decision.
COURT OF APPEALS CASE
We filed our appellate brief on June 30, which contained 50 pages of arguments, 128 pages including the addendum, and an appendix 198 pages long. The state filed its brief, which is more than 100 pages long, in response to ours on November 29; and we have until January 15 to file our reply to the state’s brief. Then the Court of Appeals will hear oral argument.
We expect to need more than 60 hours to reply to the state’s brief, which is over 100 pages long including attachments, and for oral argument. We would therefore like to raise an addition $10,000 to cover our discounted legal fees. We will appreciate your additional donations.
We are using our best efforts to move the case along as swiftly as possible. If we preserve the win in the Superior Court at the Court of Appeals, we will do some discovery, but there are only a few facts we need to prove. We would then move for summary judgment, arguing that there are no material facts in dispute and that we have the right to win the lawsuit.
We hope this update is helpful to you. Thank you again so much for your generous support of this cause so far, and we would appreciate your additional donations.
Peter W Adler, Esquire
December 17, 2021