September 2019

Nonprofit Health Insurer Prevails in Indiana Court of Appeals on Privacy and Outrage Tort Claims

North America - United States | North America | United States - Indiana

A nonprofit health insurer prevailed in litigation brought by a plaintiff who alleged that the insurer wrongfully disclosed to her husband that she underwent testing for various sexually communicable diseases. Our firm defended the insurer against multiple tort claims, including unlawful disclosure of private facts to a particular public, intrusion upon seclusion and outrage.

The Marion County Superior Court had previously granted in part and denied in part the insurer’s motion to dismiss. The plaintiff’s outrage claim was allowed to go forward but the trial court granted the insurer’s motion to dismiss with respect to all other claims.

A majority of the Indiana Court of Appeals’ three-judge panel upheld the dismissal of the disclosure and intrusion claims. The panel also reversed the trial court’s decision not to dismiss the outrage claim and remanded the case back to the trial court with instructions to dismiss the outrage claim.

The plaintiff then filed a petition for transfer to the Indiana Supreme Court, which was denied. In a separate dissent, Chief Justice Loretta H. Rush said that she would have granted transfer but only to clarify the confines of the public disclosure of private facts tort and otherwise would have affirmed the Court of Appeals’ opinion.

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