TakeCare lawsuit against GovGuam can go to trial

TakeCare (PNC file photo)

District Court Magistrate Judge Joaquin Manibusan has ruled that TakeCare Insurance has grounds to pursue its lawsuit over the law requiring health insurance providers bidding for the GovGuam employee health contract to include GRMC in their network.

In a decision issued Monday, Judge Manibusan denied GovGuam’s bid to dismiss TakeCare’s lawsuit and concluded that the health insurer has a viable claim.

“The question remains,” wrote Manibusan “whether Guam Public Law 35-2 is an improper delegation of authority or not. This is a factual issue that needs to be determined at trial.”

In response, TakeCare issued a statement saying they appreciate the court recognizing the validity of their complaint and the opportunity to demonstrate at trial that the law is unconstitutional.

Edward Birn, the chairman of the GovGuam Health Insurance negotiating team, said this is an ongoing legal process and he declined to comment.

A scheduling conference to set a trial date has been set for Feb. 25.