United States District Court, S.D. Alabama, Southern Division
TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER
V. S. GRANADE SENIOR UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
matter is before the court on Defendant's motion for
Temporary Restraining Order (“TRO”) and
preliminary injunction. (Doc. 3). The Court notes that
counsel for Plaintiff, TruBridge, L.L.C. would have received
electronic notice of Defendant's motion yesterday when it
was filed. Accordingly, counsel for all parties in this
action have notice of the action and the motion for TRO and
preliminary injunction. For the reasons explained below, the
Court finds that the motion for TRO should be granted and
that a hearing should be scheduled on the motion for
case involves a breach of contract claim concerning a
contract to provide accounts receivable management services.
Defendant Tyrone Hospital (“Defendant”) moves for
TRO against TruBridge, LLC (“Plaintiff”).
February 10, 2016, Plaintiff and Defendant (collectively
“the parties”) entered into a contract
(“the Agreement”) for Plaintiff to provide
business, managed information technology, and consulting
services to Defendant. (Doc. 1-2, p. 10). On August 9, 2016,
the parties modified the Agreement by a Service Addendum
(“August Service Addendum”). Id. at p.
42-43. In the August Service Addendum, the parties agreed
Plaintiff would provide additional services, including
Accounts Receivable Management Services, to Defendant for the
next five (5) years. Id. at p. 38; 46. Accounts
Receivable Management Services included, inter alia,
“the billing of all patients, to include...the billing
of all primary and secondary claims to all third party
payers.” Id. at p. 44. Furthermore, the August
Service Addendum superseded all other written or oral
representations between the parties. Id. at 38.
parties subsequently amended the Agreement once more by a
Service Addendum dated January 5, 2017 (“January
Service Addendum”). Id. at pp. 51-53. In the
January Service Addendum, the parties agreed to remove Clinic
A/R from the scope of services Plaintiff was to provide to
Defendant. Id. at p. 52. Notwithstanding the January
Service Addendum, all other terms, conditions, and
obligations specified in the Agreement were to remain fully
in force. Id. at 52.
February 22, 2018, Defendant's Chief Executive Officer,
Joseph Peluso, sent a letter to Plaintiff's President and
Chief Executive Officer, Christopher Fowler, advising
Plaintiff that Defendant was terminating the Agreement. (Doc.
2-1, p. 2). As grounds for termination, Defendant alleged,
“We recently discovered that to date there are 1, 061
Medicaid claims which have not been billed by TruBridge, LLC
dating back to July 2017, totaling $2, 278, 249.20 in charges
as of February 19, 2018.” Id. Defendant claims
it has made numerous attempts to resolve its issues with
Plaintiff, but Plaintiff failed to timely bill claims.
Id. Plaintiff, however, asserts it “has
performed its promises under the Amended Agreement in all
material respects and remains able to do so for the remainder
of the contract term.” (Doc. 1-1 ¶ 13).
Accordingly, Plaintiff alleges Defendant breached the
Agreement by renouncing its obligations and refusing to
perform under the Agreement. Id. at ¶ 18.
motion for Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and Preliminary
Injunction, Defendant requests that this Court: 1) grant
Defendant permission to immediately contract with another
billing firm, 2) release accounts so Defendant may pursue
collections on its own, 3) freeze any assets and/or accounts
Plaintiff holds for Defendant, 4) order Plaintiff to remit
any and all sums due to Defendant under the Agreement as such
sums are received and to segregate and account for the
percentage to which Plaintiff would be entitled but for its
breach, 5) order Plaintiff to immediately cease and desist
any and all collection activity of behalf of Defendant, 6)
order Plaintiff to immediately turnover and release to
Defendant any and all records of Defendant's accounts, 7)
order Plaintiff to provide a complete accounting of
collections and remittances for any and all accounts placed
with Plaintiff for collection, and 8) permit Defendant to
rehire its former employees presently employed by Plaintiff
without incurring the penalty specified in Section 7(A) of
Court previously noted the applicable standard for
preliminary injunctive relief in Hammock ex rel. Hammock
v. Keys, 93 F.Supp.2d 1222 (S.D. Ala. 2000):
A party seeking a preliminary injunction must establish the
following four factors: (1) a substantial likelihood of
success on the merits; (2) a threat of irreparable injury;
(3) that its own injury would outweigh the injury to the
nonmovant; and (4) that the injunction would not disserve the
public interest. Tefel v. Reno, 180 F.3d 1286, 1295
(11th Cir.1999); McDonald's Corp. v. Robertson,
147 F.3d 1301, 1306 (11th Cir.1998). The Court should be
mindful that a preliminary injunction is an extraordinary and
drastic remedy not to be granted unless the movant has
clearly satisfied the burden of persuasion as to the four
requisites. McDonald's, 147 F.3d at 1306;
Northeastern Fl. Chapter of the Ass'n of Gen.
Contractors of Am. v. City of Jacksonville, 896 F.2d
1283, 1285 (11th Cir.1990).
Id., at 1226-27. The same standard applies to a
request for a temporary restraining order as to a request for
a preliminary injunction. Morgan Stanley DW, Inc., v.
Frisby, 163 F.Supp.2d 1371, 1374 (N.D.Ga. 2001) (citing
Ingram v. Ault, 50 F.3d 898, 900 (11th Cir. 1995)).
Substantial likelihood of ...