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SEC Poised to Modify 'No Admit, No Deny' Policy in Settlements

John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, July 22, 2013

HLM: Why is it so important for so many of these entities to have no admission of guilt?

Andreson: Without admitting guilt it doesn't give a leg up to private plaintiffs or DOJ. It is simply a neutral factor. That is what was so helpful to them, particularly in these parallel investigations. Now I think it is going to forestall those investigations or cause them to go to trial because if their hand is forced by the SEC to admit it then they are going to have other problems.

HLM: Could other federal regulatory entities, such as the Department of Health and Human Services, look at the SEC policy shift and do the same thing?

Andreson: Any regulatory body out there that relies on the same policy of no-admit no-deny is really going to take note of what the SEC has done and they are going to really pay attention to what effect that policy has in the short term to see how it is playing out.

HLM: What are the implications for investor-owned hospitals?

Andreson: I am not sure I could share observations about the specific effects this may have on that sector. It remains to be seen. They have crafted this new policy. They are getting ready to roll it out. They are going to choose their initial cases carefully and use them as benchmarks.

But I am not sure it is going to have sector specific implications at this point. It's going to depend upon the evidence in the case and how it reaches the conduct is at issue. Those are going to be the driving factors here, not so much the sectors.

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