About Seana Thomas
Seana B. Thomas is an AV-Preeminent rated lawyer who has been a civil litigator in California for 36 years.
Ms. Thomas’s primary practice is in the defense and trial of civil matters involving premises liability, food product liability, trucking loss and other matters.
Since 2008, Ms. Thomas’s practice has also emphasized Medicare Secondary Payer consultation and case management in the liability context, for plaintiffs’ counsel as well as defense entities. She has qualified as an expert at trial, and has been asked to participate in numerous mediations involving complicated questions of Medicare reimbursement.
Ms. Thomas frequently speaks about MSP issues and practice to a wide variety of legal and claim organizations.
She is certified by the State Bar of California as an MCLE provider on MSP reimbursement law and practice and other lien reimbursement matters, including Medicaid and other statutory liens.seana*sbthomaslaw.com
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MEDICARE NEWSFLASH For several years we have been advising our clients, all of whom are in the Ninth Circuit (California, Arizona, Nevada, Washington, Montana, Oregon, Hawaii, Idaho and Alaska), that Federal Circuit Court cases throughout the country have shown a continuing increase in jurisdictions adopting the reasoning of the In Re Avandia case, which holds that Medicare Advantage Plans (MAPs – also …
Option to Notify BCRC that a Case is Approaching Settlement and Request Final Conditional Payment Process Begin
IMPORTANT NEW MEDICARE REIMBURSEMENT DEVELOPMENT: OPTION TO NOTIFY BCRC THAT A CASE IS APPROACHING SETTLEMENT AND REQUEST FINAL CONDITIONAL PAYMENT PROCESS BEGIN As part of the Strengthening Medicare and Repaying Taxpayers Act of 2012 (the SMART Act), the Medicare Secondary Payer Recovery Portal (MSPRP) has been modified to permit authorized users to notify the Benefits Coordination & Recovery Center (BCRC) …
New Lee v. Silveira case extends Howell analysis
New Lee v. Silveira case extends Howell analysis, holding that in order to prevail under C.C.P. Section 998, plaintiff can use only the negotiated rate differential in determining whether he/she did “better” than the statutory offer – not the gross amount the jury may have awarded. Be sure to read our other Howell related posts.
MEDICARE NEWS FLASH — Additional Smart Act Provisions Implemented by Medicare – Right of Appeal
CMS has just issued final rules implementing additional KEY PROVISIONS of the Strengthening Medicare and Repaying Taxpayers Act of 2012 (SMART Act). The Act, which was moved through Congress in record time thanks to the efforts of the Medicare Recovery Advocacy Coalition (MARC) and Roy Franco, has five primary provisions, which CMS has been implementing individually. Perhaps the most important …
SIGNIFICANT NEW DISCOVERY CASE: Gonsalves v. Li (A140284):
Court of Appeal holds that a party’s denials of requests for admissions are inadmissible at trial ,where a party’s conduct in litigation is not in issue. The First District Court of Appeal ruled yesterday that a party’s denial or lack of admission in response to requests for admissions cannot be used for impeachment purposes. The panel overturned a judgment of …
UPDATE: CMS Accepts 5 digit SSNs
In further implementation of the SMART Act, on January 5th, 2015 CMS released the latest version of the MMSEA Section 111 NGHP User Guide. The changes were expected, and are welcomed. The 2 major changes to the user guide are outlined below: 1) CMS will now accept 5 digit SSN’s on submitted records. RREs that submit query and claim input …
UPDATES: Excessive Hospital Billing; Proposed Regulations to Limit Hospital Billing to Medicare Reimbursement Rates
Dear Friends and Colleagues: The following informative update has been received from a colleague, and I pass it along as it touches on aspects of Medicare and other insurer reimbursement, particularly in the context of charges disputed because they are asserted to be excessive. Please let me know if you would like to discuss any of these issues further. “Just …
ICD-10 Update, August 1, 2014
On August 1, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) provided additional information regarding the upcoming change to the ICD-10 coding system which we regularly use in preparing documents, such as notices to COB&R and Releases, for our clients. If you have wondered why the change is being made, the current ICD-9 coding system has about one-tenth the …
MEDICARE UPDATE: NEW BENEFITS FOR PATIENTS WITH END STAGE RENAL DISEASE
A proposed rule updates payment policies & rates under for patients with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) for services furnished on or after January 1, 2015
Proving the Value of Present and Future Medical Bills Under Howell and Corenbaum: How to establish “Negotiated Rate Differentials” in Medicare, Kaiser and Other Lien Cases
Seana Thomas will be lead panelist at an important seminar for all litigators in California, combining her two areas of practice emphasis: litigation and Medicare Secondary Payer Reimbursement. The Seminar, sponsored by the Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada will be held in San Francisco, CA, on Friday February 21, 2014. We’ll post updates as they become …
Vons Annual Defense Panel Conference
Seana will be speaking at the Vons Annual Defense Panel Conference this year in Arcadia, California. Her discussion will focus on Medicare Secondary Payer reimbursement updates. The event will take place on November 8th, 2013 Seana Thomas is frequently sought for public speaking engagements and expert witness testimony. If you would like to have Seana at your next event, please …
Supporting Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada
In support of the Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada’s 20th Annual Golf Tournament at Silverado Resort in Napa, CA, happening on September 27, 2013 About the Association of Defense Counsel of Northern California and Nevada The Association of Defense Counsel is the only organization in Northern California and the state of Nevada devoted exclusively to representing the …
Solving the Mystery of Medicare Secondary Payer Reimbursement
Seana Thomas will discuss “Solving the Mystery of Medicare Secondary Payer Reimbursement” on March 28, 2013 at an MCLE-approved presentation sponsored by the Santa Barbara Legal Secretaries Association. The meeting will be held at the Santa Barbara College of Law, 20 E.Victoria Street, Santa Barbara, California. RSVP by March 20, 2013 to SBLPA, P.O.Box 2013, Santa Barbara, CA 93102.
MSP Update for Claims Professionals
Seana Thomas will be presenting a Medicare Secondary Payer procedural update, emphasizing recent and upcoming changes in MSP law, to claims professionals in Pleasanton, California on March 19, 2013.
MSP Update for Claims Professionals
Seana Thomas and Krystie Vance will be presenting a Medicare Secondary Payer Reimbursement Update to claims professional in Phoenix, Arizona on February 19-20, 2013.