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A05429 Summary:

BILL NOA05429
 
SAME ASNo Same As
 
SPONSORWeprin
 
COSPNSR
 
MLTSPNSRGoodell, Malliotakis
 
Amd 176.00 & 460.10, add 176.75, 176.80 & 176.85, Pen L
 
Establishes the crime of unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers for knowingly acting as a runner, or using, soliciting, directing, hiring or employing another person to act as a runner; a "runner" is defined as a person, who knowingly, for profit, seeks to procure clients, patients or customers on behalf of an attorney or health care provider for the purpose of falsely or fraudulently obtaining benefits under a contract of insurance or asserting a claim against an insurer or insured for the services provided by such attorney or health care provider.
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A05429 Actions:

BILL NOA05429
 
02/09/2017referred to codes
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A05429 Memo:

NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
 
BILL NUMBER: A5429
 
SPONSOR: Weprin (MS)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the penal law, in relation to estab- lishing the crime of unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers   PURPOSE: To make the use of "runners" illegal in New York.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section one amends section 176.00 of the Penal Law to add three new definitions "provider", "public media" and "runner". A "runner" is defined as a person who, not a provider, who with the intent to obtain a material pecuniary benefit, procurers or attempts to procure a client, patient or customer at the direction of, request of, in cooperation with, while employed by, or with the intent to solicit a fee from, a provider or from any person who creates the impression that he or she or his or her practice can provide legal or health care services. Section two of the bill adds three new sections to the Penal Law. Section 176.75 makes it a class A misdemeanor to either act as a runner on more than one occasion in a 12-month period or as a provider, in violation of law or existing professional codes of conduct, uses, solic- its, directs, hires or employs another person to act as a runner on more than one occasion over any 12-month period an provides a material pecu- niary benefit. Section 176.80 makes it a class E felony if the person acts a runner on five or more occasions over a 12-month period or if the aggregate benefit received as a result of being a runner exceeds $5,000. Section 176.85 makes it a class D felony if the person acts as a runner on ten or more occasions over a 12-month period or if the aggregate benefit received as a result of being a runner exceeds $20,000. Section three provides for conforming language in the sentencing stat- utes. Section four of the bill provides for an effective date.   JUSTIFICATION: On July 15, 1999 Governor Christie Whitman of New Jersey signed into law legislation making it a crime to act as a runner or to solicit or employ a runner to procure clients. This law was a result of recommendations by that state's Governor's Task Force on Health Care Fraud. This legislation is patterned on that law. The use of runners is a prac- tice which facilitates fraud and serves no legitimate purpose. A runner is defined as a person who, not a provider, not with the intent to obtain a material pecuniary benefit, procurers or attempts to procure a client, patient or customer at the direction of, request of, in cooper- ations with, while employed by, or with the intent to solicit a fee from, a provider or from any person who creates the impression that he or she or his or her practice can provide legal or health care services. Because most fraud schemes depend on a large volume of patients, health care providers and attorneys engaged in fraud will often pay third parties for recruiting clients, patients and customers. Often the client, patient or customer receives inadequate or inappropriate care and services. The use of runners is unfortunately common in the New York metropolitan area. In addition to inadequate medical care, the use of runners inflates the cost of insurance which, in turn, is borne by the insuring public. This bill makes it illegal for a provider to pay or offer to pay a pecuniary benefit to a runner. Soliciting clients through the public media and referring clients, patients and customers to a provider as is otherwise authorized by law is excluded from the prohibitions under this bill.   COST TO STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS: None.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2009-10 S.1335- Referred to Codes 2007-08 S.637-Passed Senate/Assembly Codes 2005-06 S.487-Passed Senate/Assembly Codes 2003-04 S.555-Passed Senate/Assembly Codes 2001-02 S.123-Passed Senate/Assembly Codes 2000: S.6781B - Passed Senate/Assembly Rules 2012: 06/15/11 referred to codes 01/04/12 referred to codes   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeeding that date on which it shall have become a law.
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A05429 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                          5429
 
                               2017-2018 Regular Sessions
 
                   IN ASSEMBLY
 
                                    February 9, 2017
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced by M. of A. WEPRIN -- Multi-Sponsored by -- M. of A. GOODELL,
          MALLIOTAKIS -- read once and referred to the Committee on Codes
 
        AN  ACT to amend the penal law, in relation to establishing the crime of
          unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers
 
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
     1    Section  1. Section 176.00 of the penal law is amended by adding three
     2  new subdivisions 6, 7 and 8 to read as follows:
     3    6. "Provider" means a health care professional, an owner  or  operator
     4  of a health care practice or facility or an attorney.
     5    7.  "Public  media" means any of the following means of communication,
     6  provided that the use of such communication does not  involve  in-person
     7  contact  with a specific prospective client, patient or customer for the
     8  purpose of  retention,  treatment  or  representation  in  a  particular
     9  matter:  telephone directories, professional directories, newspapers and
    10  other periodicals, radio and television, billboards, brochures, business
    11  cards, newsletters, announcements, promotional items branding materials,
    12  advertisements, websites and mailed or electronically transmitted  writ-
    13  ten communications, advertisements and brandings.
    14    8.  "Runner"  means  a  person, not a provider, who with the intent to
    15  obtain a material pecuniary benefit, procures or attempts to  procure  a
    16  client,  patient or customer at the direction of, request of, in cooper-
    17  ation with, while employed by, or with intent to solicit a fee  from,  a
    18  provider or from any person who creates the impression that he or she or
    19  his or her practice can provide legal or health care services. Such term
    20  shall  not include a person who procures or attempts to procure clients,
    21  patients or customers for a provider through public media or who  refers
    22  clients,  patients  or customers as authorized or permitted by law or in
    23  accordance with existing professional codes  of  conduct  governing  the
    24  professional  practice  of a provider.  Nothing in this article shall be
    25  deemed to prohibit an agent, broker or employee of a health  maintenance
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD09481-01-7

        A. 5429                             2
 
     1  organization from seeking to sell health maintenance organization cover-
     2  age or health insurance coverage to an individual or group.
     3    §  2.  The  penal  law is amended by adding three new sections 176.75,
     4  176.80 and 176.85 to read as follows:
     5  § 176.75 Unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers  in  the
     6             third degree.
     7    A  person  is  guilty  of unlawful procurement of clients, patients or
     8  customers in the third degree when he or she knowingly:
     9    1. Acts as a runner on more than one occasion during any  twelve-month
    10  period; or
    11    2.  As  a provider, in violation of law or existing professional codes
    12  of conduct governing the professional practice of  the  provider,  uses,
    13  solicits, directs, hires or employs another person to act as a runner on
    14  more than one occasion over any twelve-month period and provides a mate-
    15  rial pecuniary benefit.
    16    Unlawful  procurement  of  clients, patients or customers in the third
    17  degree is a class A misdemeanor.
    18  § 176.80 Unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers  in  the
    19             second degree.
    20    1.  A person is guilty of unlawful procurement of clients, patients or
    21  customers in the second degree when he or she knowingly acts as a runner
    22  on five or more occasions over any twelve-month period, or for a pecuni-
    23  ary benefit that in the  aggregate  exceeds  five  thousand  dollars  in
    24  value; or
    25    2.  As  a provider, in violation of law or existing professional codes
    26  of conduct governing the professional practice of the provider, knowing-
    27  ly uses, solicits, directs, hires or employs one or more persons to  act
    28  as  a  runner on five or more occasions over any twelve-month period, or
    29  provides a pecuniary benefit to the runner that in the aggregate exceeds
    30  five thousand dollars in value.
    31    Unlawful procurement of clients, patients or customers in  the  second
    32  degree is a class E felony.
    33  § 176.85 Unlawful  procurement  of clients, patients or customers in the
    34             first degree.
    35    1. A person is guilty of unlawful procurement of clients, patients  or
    36  customers  in the first degree when he or she knowingly acts as a runner
    37  on ten or more occasions over any twelve-month period, or for a  pecuni-
    38  ary  benefit  that  in  the aggregate exceeds twenty thousand dollars in
    39  value; or
    40    2. As a provider, in violation of law or existing  professional  codes
    41  of conduct governing the professional practice of the provider, knowing-
    42  ly  uses, solicits, directs, hires or employs one or more persons to act
    43  as a runner on ten or more occasions over any  twelve-month  period,  or
    44  provides a pecuniary benefit to the runner that in the aggregate exceeds
    45  twenty thousand dollars in value.
    46    Unlawful  procurement  of  clients, patients or customers in the first
    47  degree is a class D felony.
    48    § 3. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 1 of section  460.10  of  the  penal
    49  law,  as  amended by chapter 368 of the laws of 2015, is amended to read
    50  as follows:
    51    (a) Any of the felonies set forth in this  chapter:  sections  120.05,
    52  120.10 and 120.11 relating to assault; sections 121.12 and 121.13 relat-
    53  ing  to  strangulation;  sections 125.10 to 125.27 relating to homicide;
    54  sections 130.25, 130.30 and 130.35 relating to rape; sections 135.20 and
    55  135.25 relating to kidnapping; sections 135.35 and  135.37  relating  to
    56  labor trafficking; section 135.65 relating to coercion; sections 140.20,

        A. 5429                             3
 
     1  140.25  and  140.30  relating  to  burglary; sections 145.05, 145.10 and
     2  145.12 relating to criminal mischief; article one hundred fifty relating
     3  to arson; sections 155.30, 155.35, 155.40 and 155.42 relating  to  grand
     4  larceny;  sections  177.10, 177.15, 177.20 and 177.25 relating to health
     5  care fraud; article one hundred  sixty  relating  to  robbery;  sections
     6  165.45,  165.50,  165.52  and  165.54 relating to criminal possession of
     7  stolen property; sections 165.72 and 165.73 relating to trademark  coun-
     8  terfeiting;  sections 170.10, 170.15, 170.25, 170.30, 170.40, 170.65 and
     9  170.70 relating to forgery; sections 175.10, 175.25, 175.35, 175.40  and
    10  210.40 relating to false statements; sections 176.15, 176.20, 176.25 and
    11  176.30  relating to insurance fraud; sections 176.80 and 176.85 relating
    12  to unlawful procurement of  clients,  patients  or  customers;  sections
    13  178.20 and 178.25 relating to criminal diversion of prescription medica-
    14  tions  and  prescriptions;  sections  180.03,  180.08,  180.15,  180.25,
    15  180.40, 180.45, 200.00, 200.03, 200.04, 200.10, 200.11, 200.12,  200.20,
    16  200.22,  200.25,  200.27,  200.56,  215.00,  215.05 and 215.19; sections
    17  187.10, 187.15, 187.20  and  187.25  relating  to  residential  mortgage
    18  fraud,  sections  190.40  and 190.42 relating to criminal usury; section
    19  190.65 relating to schemes to defraud; any  felony  defined  in  article
    20  four  hundred ninety-six; sections 205.60 and 205.65 relating to hinder-
    21  ing prosecution; sections 210.10, 210.15, and 215.51 relating to perjury
    22  and  contempt;  section  215.40  relating  to  tampering  with  physical
    23  evidence;  sections  220.06,  220.09,  220.16,  220.18,  220.21, 220.31,
    24  220.34, 220.39, 220.41,  220.43,  220.46,  220.55,  220.60,  220.65  and
    25  220.77  relating  to  controlled  substances; sections 225.10 and 225.20
    26  relating to gambling; sections 230.25, 230.30, and  230.32  relating  to
    27  promoting  prostitution;  section  230.34  relating  to sex trafficking;
    28  sections 235.06,  235.07,  235.21  and  235.22  relating  to  obscenity;
    29  sections 263.10 and 263.15 relating to promoting a sexual performance by
    30  a child; sections 265.02, 265.03, 265.04, 265.11, 265.12, 265.13 and the
    31  provisions  of  section  265.10  which  constitute  a felony relating to
    32  firearms and other dangerous weapons; sections 265.14 and 265.16  relat-
    33  ing  to  criminal  sale of a firearm; section 275.10, 275.20, 275.30, or
    34  275.40 relating to unauthorized recordings; and sections 470.05, 470.10,
    35  470.15 and 470.20 relating to money laundering; or
    36    § 4. This act shall take effect on the first of November next succeed-
    37  ing the date on which it shall have become a law.
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