LaBombard v. Samaritan Health Sys

In LaBombard v. Samaritan Health Sys., 195 Ariz. 543, 545,4, 991 P.2d 246, 248 (App. 1998), a hospital provided services to an injured person and was paid by AHCCCS. 195 Ariz. at 545,4, 991 P.2d at 248. The hospital filed a lien and the patient was able to collect a settlement from the insurer of the tortfeasor. Id. at 5-7. The patient and the hospital disputed the enforceability of the lien, for reasons other than federal preemption. Id. at 546,8, 991 P.2d at 249. The Court held the lien was enforceable but never addressed whether the lien was against the patient or the tortfeasor or violated federal preemption. Id. at 544-45,1, 991 P.2d at 247-48. In LaBombard v. Samaritan Health Sys., a hospital treated a person injured in a car accident. 195 Ariz. at 545,4, 991 P.2d at 248. When the injured person received a settlement from the tortfeasor, the hospital successfully recovered its treatment costs from the injured person, relying on 33--931(A), which establishes a lien on "all claims of liability or indemnity except health insurance for damages accruing to" the person who received treatment. Id. at 545--46,5-10, 991 P.2d at 248--49. On appeal, the injured person claimed that the hospital's lien should be reduced by its share of the attorneys' fees under the common fund doctrine, and we agreed. Id. at 548, 551,21, 32-33, 991 P.2d at 251, 254.