ShareThis Page

UPMC agrees to tentative settlement in long-running antitrust case

Brian Bowling
| Friday, Feb. 5, 2016, 6:51 p.m.

UPMC has tentatively agreed to pay $12.5 million to settle its involvement in a long-running antitrust lawsuit, according to court documents filed Friday.

Cole's Wexford Hotel Inc. is the only remaining plaintiff in a six-year-old lawsuit originally filed by Royal Mile Co., a Whitehall property management company. The lawsuit claims that UPMC and Highmark Inc. conspired to keep insurance competitors out of Western Pennsylvania.

UPMC and Highmark deny the allegations.

UPMC spokeswoman Gloria Kreps declined to comment.

Representatives of Highmark and Cole's Wexford Hotel couldn't be reached for comment.

The proposal was mentioned in a motion by UPMC and Cole's Wexford asking U.S. District Judge Joy Flowers Conti to put the lawsuit on hold for 90 days while they work out the final details of the settlement. Staying the case would save both sides money in pretrial costs.

The settlement, which doesn't include Highmark, would reimburse the Pine hotel and other small-group health insurance subscribers who obtained coverage from Highmark Health Insurance Co., a for-profit subsidiary of the nonprofit insurer, or any of its other for-profit subsidiaries between July 1, 2010, and March 21, 2012.

By keeping competitors out of the market, the UPMC-Highmark conspiracy allowed the for-profit subsidiaries to overcharge customers on their premiums, the lawsuit says.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at 412-325-4301 or

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.