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Primary Care Providers Win Challenge of CMS Interpretation of Enhanced Payment Law

With the help and support of the Tennessee Medical Association, 21 Tennessee physicians of underserved communities joined together and retained Bass, Berry & Sims to file suit against the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to stop improper collection efforts. Our team, led by David King, was successful in halting efforts to recoup TennCare payments that were used legitimately to expand services in communities that needed them. Read more

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Healthcare Private Equity Compliance Checklist

The complex and ever-changing healthcare regulatory and enforcement environment, including increased focus on the role of private equity firms in their portfolio companies, make compliance a top priority for private equity firms investing in healthcare companies. The best way to limit your exposure as a private equity firm is to avoid a compliance misstep in the first place. Additionally, an effective and robust compliance program for your portfolio healthcare company makes it much more attractive to potential buyers and helps you avoid an unexpected and costly investigation or valuation hit down the road. Download the Healthcare Private Equity Compliance Checklist to assess whether your portfolio company's compliance program is up-to-date.

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Labor Talk Blog: Board Finalizes New Rule Modifying Union Election Procedures: A Brief Summary of Provisions

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December 17, 2014

On December 12, the National Labor Relations Board (the "Board") finalized a new rule amending its representation case procedures. Employers should be aware of how the new rule will affect union organization in the workplace. The rule is aimed at "streamlining and modernizing" union election procedures so as to "expeditiously resolv[e] questions of representation." The rule was published in the Federal Register on December 15 and will take effect on April 14, 2015. The new rule:

  • Provides for electronic filing and transmission of election petitions and other documents;
  • Generally requires the Regional Director to set a pre-election hearing eight days after a hearing notice is served and a post-election hearing 14 days after the filing of objections;
  • Generally requires non-petitioning parties to identify any issues they have with the election petition in a Statement of Position one business day before the pre-election hearing opens and then requires the petitioner to respond to such issues at the beginning of the hearing;
  • Generally requires employers to provide as part of its Statement of Position a list of prospective voters with their job classifications, shifts, and work locations one business day before the pre-election hearing opens;
  • Limits litigation of issues at the pre-election hearing to issues raised and positions taken in the Statement of Position and defers litigation of eligibility and inclusion issues to the post-election stage;
  • Provides for oral argument at the close of the pre-election hearing and limits written briefs to when deemed necessary by the regional director;
  • Eliminates the need to request review of a pre-election decision before the election to preserve the right to challenge the decision;
  • Eliminates automatic stays of elections caused by challenges to the regional director's pre-election decision;
  • Narrows the issues the Board must review in post-election disputes to those issues raised; and
  • Requires employers to submit a voter list within two, as opposed to seven, business days following the regional director's approval of an election agreement or decision directing an election, and requires employers to include voters' personal email addresses and phone numbers (if available) on the voter list.

As a result of the new rule, elections could theoretically be held in as few as 10 to 12 days.

It is unlikely that the new rule will go unchallenged. The rule has been heavily criticized as sanctioning "union ambush tactics." Several employer groups, such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, have already suggested that they intend to file lawsuits. However, employers should not bank on courts overturning the new rule. Employers should instead familiarize themselves with their new obligations and be prepared for expedited elections.

For more labor and employment information, visit www.BassBerryLaborTalk.com.


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