Dan Ladendorf Receives Headline in The Rochester Sentinel for 2013 ITLA Trial Lawyer of the Year

Check out this Northern Indiana news release on Dan Ladendorf’s recent recognition as 2013 Trial Lawyer of the Year, from Page A01 of The Rochester Sentinel, December 5, 2013:

Manitou resident top trial lawyer

The Sentinel report

An Indianapolis lawyer with a summer home on Lake Manitou is the Indiana Trial Lawyers Association 2013 Trial Lawyer of the Year.

Daniel A. Ladendorf, of Ladendorf and Ladendorf, received the award for his efforts to get the 2013 Indiana General Assembly to pass amendments to the state’s hospital lien statute.

“The changes will help to protect all future residents who find themselves in need of hospital services as a result of someone else’s wrongdoing,” Ladendorf said. “Prior to the changes, effective July 1, 2013, hospitals routinely ignored the benefits to which an injured patient was entitled under a private health insurance plan or Medicare, seeking instead to collect its full charges from those patients who, for example, were injured by a drunk driver.”

State Sen. Brent Steele, R-Bedford, introduced the legislatation and State Rep. Jud McMillin, R-Brookville, carried it through the House.

The changes stop hospitals from asserting liens against Medicare patients and require hospitals to give patients credit for any contractual adjustments or write-offs it agreed to under the patient’s health plan, according to the association’s press release. The release says Ladendorf’s work on the amendments followed a case involving the wrongful death claim for the estate of a woman who died of injuries from a car wreck. The release says the collision was caused by another driver who failed to yield.

Instead of collecting a reduced payment from Medicare, the hospital set a $155,000 bill for the patient and took out a lien against any recovery her estate made in the wrongful death claim against the driver who caused the crash. However, the estate could only collect $100,000 in damages, limited by the at-fault driver’s liability insurance coverage.

According to the release, Ladendorf also found many Indiana hospitals refused to credit an injured patient’s account for the write-off it agreed to accept as a condition of providing in-network services under a patient’s health plan.

He was also involved in testimony before Senate and House committees considering lien statute amendments, pointing out the lien statute was first adopted in the 1930s, before Medicare, Medicaid and private health insurance plans provided assurances to hospitals of payment for services.

Attorneys Stephen L. Williams, Terre Haute, and Thomas E. Hamer, Anderson, nominated Ladendorf for the award.

Ladendorf earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1983 from Indiana University. He received his law degree from Indiana University in 1986.