Lawsuit for Interfering With Doctors Patients Contracts

In Kiepfer v. Beller, 944 F.2d 1213 (5th Cir. 1991) Kiepfer, in his individual capacity, sued three other doctors and an insurance exchange for tortiously interfering with his patient's contracts and under the Sherman Antitrust Act. Kiepfer, 944 F.2d at 1215-16. Id. Kiepfer conducted his business through a professional association and was the association's sole owner. Id. at 1221. The defendants argued Kiepfer only proved damages to the professional association and, consequently, could not recover in his individual capacity. Id. at 1222. The Fifth Circuit held that the jury did not award Kiepfer damages suffered by the association, but awarded damages Kiepfer personally suffered. Id. The Fifth Circuit held that evidence of damage to the professional association was necessary to prove his antitrust cause of action. Id. In re Burzynski, 989 F.2d 733 (5th Cir. 1993) Burzynski, a physician, sued as a third-party beneficiary of health insurance policies issued to his patients. Burzynski, 989 F.2d at 737-38. The Fifth Circuit held "Burzynski and BRI [Burzynski Research Institute, Inc.] are arguably third-party beneficiaries of the insurance policies, and thus may maintain an action for tortious interference of a contract." Burzynski, 989 F.2d at 738. Burzynski, however, brought his claim in his individual capacity and as a representative of BRI. See id. at 733, 737; Burzynski v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., 967 F.2d 1063, 1063 and 1064 n.1 (5th Cir. 1992) (referring "collectively to the doctor and his institute as simply "'Dr. Burzynski.'").