Hawaii Supreme Court Issues Win for Americans

In a breakthrough win for Americans, the Hawaii Supreme Court sided with high school teacher Michael Siopes over health care conglomerate Kaiser Health.

Michael was diagnosed with a form of cancer so rare his health plan had never treated it before. His Kaiser physician recommended he seek treatment with a specialist, which the Kaiser administration denied.  Michael chose to seek treatment which was ultimately successful in treating his cancer.

Unfortunately, he was left with a $250,000 medical bill that Kaiser refused to cover.

When Michael went to hold Kaiser accountable for refusing to cover his medical treatment, Kaiser argued Michael should be legally bound to forced arbitration. Kaiser pointed to a contract that a representative for Michael’s employers signed.  Buried in the fine print was a forced arbitration clause. A court agreed  with Kaiser, despite the fact that Michael himself had not entered into the agreement on his own behalf and never knew it existed!

In a rare case where justice prevailed, the Hawaii Supreme Court overturned the lower court’s decision, determining that a person cannot be bound by an agreement they did not sign.