In a hearing on Dec. 27, a San Francisco Superior Court judge granted preliminary approval of the amended settlement agreement between Delta Dental of California and the plaintiff class of Premier dentists. After an error in the financial calculations was discovered during the validation CDA required of the prior settlement amounts, the new settlement includes an agreement by Delta Dental to pay an unprecedented monetary award of more than $65 million and expands the number of dentists eligible for awards to more than 14,000. The amount Delta Dental must pay in attorneys’ fees and expenses also increased from $1.5 million to $2.35 million. Terms of the previous settlement still stand — requiring Delta to provide dentists with 120 days’ notice of changes to PDAs and 12 days’ notice to CDA to prepare for questions from its members. Delta must also provide an individualized financial analysis of the financial impact of any future rate reductions for each Premier dentist whose practice will be affected by that reduction. A hearing on final approval is scheduled for April 25.
Not every Premier Provider had his or her fees reduced by the INAP, in which case those individuals will not receive any payment. Those dentists who did have their fees limited by this procedure will receive some proportionate retroactive reimbursement.
All class members will receive mailed notices after Jan. 17 that will give a written description of the amended settlement agreement and provide relevant information.
CDA will continue to keep members informed about the proposed amended settlement through the Update, newsletter and cda.org. Members with questions about the terms or meaning of the settlement may contact CDA at 800.232.7645.
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