hospital signHamsher was admitted to “Timberline Knolls Residential Treatment Center” for mental health care; her employer did not pre-authorize her treatment.  Unfortunately for the employer, its right under its healthcare plan to insist on precertification applied only to care in a “hospital,” and the Fifth Circuit concluded: “the administrative file contains only claim forms, none of which provide an indication as to whether Timberline is a ‘hospital’ as defined under the Plan.  The name is suggestive, of course, but title alone does not constitute the type of ‘substantial evidence’ that [the employer] must put forward.”  Accordingly, the Court rendered judgment for the employee, in a rare appellate reversal of an ERISA dispute.

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