Press Releases

Rep. Porter Reintroduces Bill to Help Patients Hold Insurers Accountable

Legislation expands access to judicial system for Americans denied coverage, cheated by insurers

Today, Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA), the top Democrat on the Oversight Subcommittee on Health Care and Financial Services, reintroduced legislation to help patients hold insurers accountable for wrongfully denying coverage for health care services. The Justice for Patients Act, co-led by Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), would protect patients’ access to the judicial system and prohibit mandatory arbitration clauses and limitations on class action lawsuits in health insurance contracts.

“When patients are cheated by health insurers or illegally denied coverage, they deserve the chance to get justice,” said Rep. Porter. “Mandatory arbitration clauses that restrict access to the judicial system and let health insurance giants off easy are bad for patients and families. I’m proud to reintroduce the Justice for Patients Act to protect Americans’ right to hold insurers accountable for corporate abuse.”

“Patients should not be forced to sign away their rights in fine print caveats hidden in a contract they are forced to sign in order to get care. They deserve the right to seek judicial relief if an insurer illegally denies coverage, refuses to provide required notice and appeal rights, fails to provide required premium rebates, or otherwise acts in bad faith,” said Rep. Doggett, Ranking Member of the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee.

“No person should be forced to forfeit their rights in order to access the care they need,” said Rep. Schakowsky. “Every day, as Americans turn to pharmacies, doctors’ offices, and telehealth visits, they rely on their health insurance plans for access to critical health care services. Instead of being transparent with consumers, more and more insurance companies are including these harmful mandatory arbitration clauses to avoid accountability. That must stop! That is why I am proud to co-lead on this legislation, which will ensure that every day Americans needing access to health care services can hold their insurance companies accountable and have their day in court.”

“People should not have to sign away their right to justice in order to access the healthcare they need,” said Congresswoman DeLauro. “We must end this practice, and empower patients to seek justice when they deserve it. I am proud to join Congresswoman Porter in introducing this needed legislation.”

Porter’s legislation is also supported by the American Association for Justice.

“As an advocate for families experiencing catastrophic, life-altering injuries, I see firsthand how devastating the lack of accountability can be,” said AAJ President Sean Domnick. “That’s why the American Association for Justice is proud to support the Justice for Patients Act so patients and families can seek accountability when health insurers act in bad faith and cheat patients.”

Throughout her time in Congress, Congresswoman Porter has fought to bring accountability and change to our broken health care system. Her bill cracking down on Big Pharma for raising prices faster than inflation was signed into law as part of the Inflation Reduction Act, returning billions to taxpayers. She’s also introduced legislation to shield patients with medical debt from long-term financial harm and require pharmacies to disclose the lowest price possible for prescription drugs. Rep. Porter has published reports investigating Big Pharma’s anticompetitive behavior and detailing the greed behind the skyrocketing cost of cancer drugs.