Insight

In the News: South Florida

A summary of newsworthy content from South Florida lawyers and law firms.

South Florida In the News 2018
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Compiled by Nicole Ortiz

November 10, 2017 12:43 PM

IN THE HEADLINES

Farmer, Jaffe, Weissing, Edwards, Fistos & Lehrman: Gary M. Farmer, Jr., (mass tort litigation / class actions – plaintiffs, 2013) issued a thank you notice from his role as senator to the first responders who aided on September 11, 2001, as well as those who helped Florida through Hurricane Irma.

Law Office of Scott N. Richardson: Scott Richardson (criminal defense: white-collar, 2017), heading the Florida Bar of Bar Examiners, compiled research that found that the Florida International University Law School has the highest percentage of students to pass the most recent Florida Bar exam on their first attempt.

Mark, Migdal & Hayden: Donald J. Hayden (commercial litigation; international arbitration – commercial, 2010) was reported to have sold 45,000 shares of Insmed, Inc. stock.

Rifkin & Fox-Isicoff: Tammy Fox-Isicoff (immigration law, 2007) and other Florida immigration lawyers weighed in regarding President Trump’s initial talks about dismantling the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Soon after he made his statement, the White House had hinted toward potentially compromising to keep it intact. According to the Miami Herald, Fox-Isicoff says, “If that really happens, if Congress gives the DACA people permanent protection, that would be a better result in the long run than just having all these people living out there subject to the whim of every president that comes along.”

HONORABLE MENTION

Greenberg Traurig: David C. Peck (corporate law; health care law, 2006) was featured alongside 16 other Greenberg Traurig attorneys in the LMG Life Sciences 2017 Guide’s “Life Science Stars” for their achievements in their practice areas.

ITN FEATURE

Former Manager of Developmental Institution Faces Federal Prison Time

GrayRobinson: Brian Bieber (criminal defense: general practice; criminal defense: white-collar, 2013) is defending Keystone Behavioral Pediatrics CEO Katherine Falwell in what she says are false allegations from her ex-husband John Christopher Walcutt.

Toward the end of 2011, Keystone received an audit request from the government regarding randomly selected patient files. Keystone is a developmental center that provided counseling and therapy for children with developmental, learning, and behavioral issues. It was also purported that some patients had received therapy from licensed providers. Walcutt was the former managing member of the institution at the time of the audit.

However, it was discovered that many of the patients did not receive the “one-on-one” counseling or therapy from licensed providers as originally stated. In fact, many had been left unsupervised in a small “play pen” area. Those children that received therapy did so in group sessions from unlicensed, non-credentialed employees.

Walcutt was involved in changing the files that were sent to the government’s audit request. TRICARE paid Keystone approximately $600,000 due to the claims that would not have been reimbursable in any other instance.

In the court case following the instance, Walcutt claimed that “he took direction from Keystone’s chief executive officer,” his ex-wife.

Bieber says, “Dr. Falwell absolutely had no knowledge that Mr. Walcutt was committing the crimes he admitted to,” according to First Coast News. He adds, “We have been aware of the investigation. Dr. Falwell has been forthcoming and candid with respect to every inquiry that has been made to her.”

In the end of August, Walcutt pleaded guilty to falsifying patient progress notes. He faces a maximum of five years in federal prison.

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