Kaiser Foundation Health Plan, Inc. v. Superior Court

The courts lack the power to confirm or review an interim arbitration award that does not resolve all disputed issues submitted to the arbitrator for decision.  The trial court lacks the power to confirm, and the Court of Appeal lacks jurisdiction to hear an appeal from confirmation of, an interim arbitration award that does not resolve all disputed issues submitted to the arbitrator for decision.  Here, the arbitrator issued an interim award holding that the complainant’s claims for reimbursement of emergency medical care provided to participants in a Kaiser-administered Medicare Part C Plan were not barred by failure to exhaust administrative remedies or preempted by the Medicare Act.  But that only let the claims proceed, the award did not resolve the reimbursement claims on the merits or similar claims involving patients not on a Medicare Part C Plan.  Because the merits of the reimbursement claims had not been decided, the interim award was not the sort of arbitration award that could be confirmed or vacated by the trial court or that could be the subject of either an appeal or an extraordinary writ proceeding.  The decision directs the trial court to vacate its order confirming the award and to dismiss the petition to confirm the award for lack of jurisdiction.

California Court of Appeal, Second District, Division 7 (Small, J., sitting by assignment); July 31, 2017; 2017 WL 3224853

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