Common Pleas Judge Upholds MCO Program
Northwestern Ohio Building and Construction Trades v. Conrad (9/8/98), Franklin Common Pleas No. 97CVH08-8508
Note: In July, 2001, the Ohio Supreme Court upheld the Common Pleas Court’s decision finding the MCO Program constitutional.
In Northwestern Ohio Building and Construction Trades v. Conrad (9/8/98), Franklin Common Pleas No. 97CVH08-8508, a Common Pleas Court ruled the MCO program valid.
The Court ruled that the MCO Program does not conflict with Ohio Constitution Art. II, Sec. 35 (which is the provision which authorizes the workers’ compensation system), rejecting the argument that the MCO program involves an improper use of workers’ compensation funds. The judge stated that the use of funds related to, or was incidental to, workers’ compensation.
The Court also ruled that the MCO Program does not involve an unconstitutional delegation of authority, and does not involve unconstitutional transfer of decision-making power, finding that the MCO had no authority to “solely decide” treatment issues, and no “final” decision making power — and therefore had “no power to decide when funds should be removed.”
The Ohio Supreme Court is expected to ultimately determine this matter.