Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Commonwealth Court Rules that Class Action Lawsuit Against Corbett, Legislature, and Others for Killing adultBasic Program can continue

Pittsburgh, PA - Today the Commonwealth Court ruled that a lawsuit filed by the Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C. law firm on behalf of Pennsylvania residents harmed by the destruction of the adultBasic program can continue. The suit accuses Governor Tom Corbett, the Pennsylvania Senate, and the Pennsylvania State House, among others, of breaking the law by failing to provide funding for the program as required by statute.

The defendants had moved to have the case thrown out.

The following is a statement from William R. Caroselli and David S. Senoff, partners in Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.'s Pittsburgh and Philadelphia offices, respectively:

"We could not be more pleased with today's ruling by the Commonwealth Court. It confirms what we've been saying all along: killing the adultBasic Care program was not only mean spirited; it was against the law. Now we're going to make sure we bring the program back so Pennsylvania's working poor aren't further disadvantaged.

"The timing on this is crucial. With the Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act due any minute, it's important that we give people who work hard and play by the rules the ability to secure affordable, effective coverage.

"It's inexcusable that thousands of working Pennsylvanians are suffering because their own government broke the law, but we made some important progress today. We're going to make this right."

Specifics about the adultBasic Care program and the lawsuit:

AdultBasic was created to allow low-income workers to purchase health care insurance at a minimal cost. Pennsylvania receives annual settlement payments from tobacco companies, which amounted to more than $340 million in fiscal year 2009-2010. The Pennsylvania Tobacco Settlement Act provides that the tobacco settlement monies must be "used to make Pennsylvanians healthier and provide for the health of future generations of Pennsylvanians," and specifically that 30% of the proceeds would be shared between adultBasic Insurance and Medicaid for workers with disabilities. The adultBasic program is funded through tobacco settlement money, not taxpayer money.

The suit states that by illegally zeroing out tobacco settlement monies from their intended and mandated purpose, Gov. Corbett and the Pennsylvania Legislature violated the Pennsylvania Tobacco Settlement Act and the Pennsylvania Constitution.

The defendants in the suit are Governor Tom Corbett; Budget Secretary Charles Zogby; the Pennsylvania House of Representatives; Speaker of the House Samuel H. Smith; the Pennsylvania Senate; President Pro Tempore of the Senate Joseph B. Scarnati, III; and the Pennsylvania Department of Treasury.

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Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.
20 Stanwix Street, Seventh Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Toll Free: 866-466-5789
Phone: 412-567-1232
Fax: 412-391-7453
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