Florida orthopedic practice sues Geico for $750K over denied claims


An 18-location orthopedic practice is suing Geico for $750,000 in damages, accusing the insurer of wrongfully denying "numerous" claims, South Florida Business Journal reports.

Florida Spine & Joint Institute, which rebranded in January as iRise Spine and Joint, alleged that Geico denied personal injury protection claims for various reasons it couldn't back up. For instance, Geico allegedly accused the orthopedic practice of upcoding but did not provide follow-up information for the practice to investigate.

"In fact, several Geico representatives were recently asked during depositions what information Geico had to substantiate its allegations of fraud against FSJI," the April 2 complaint said. "Geico's representatives were unable to provide any information supporting those allegations."

Moreover, Geico is accused of damaging the orthopedic practice's reputation with accusations of fraudulent medical billing in letters sent to policyholders. iRise Spine and Joint claims these "defamatory and false statements" caused it to lose clients.

iRise Spine and Joint filed the lawsuit in an effort to get Geico's policyholders the personal injury protection benefits they're entitled to receive, CEO Ryan Fulcher told South Florida Business Journal. Florida law requires drivers to carry personal injury protection coverage.

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