Jerry Flanagan

Jerry Flanagan is Consumer Watchdog’s Litigation Director.  Flanagan leads Consumer Watchdog’s litigation efforts in the areas of health insurance coverage and access to treatments, internet privacy, the California Public Records Act, and First Amendment issues. He has 25 years experience working in public interest and health care policy, legislation and litigation. 

Flanagan has spearheaded efforts to address discrimination against those with HIV and other serious illnesses in the era of the Affordable Care Act (aka “Obamacare”). 

Flanagan was counsel of record in a case before the United States Supreme Court where he and other Consumer Watchdog counsel represented plaintiffs living with HIV in a suit against CVS for discrimination, including CVS’s failure to provide medically appropriate dispensing of HIV medications and access to necessary counseling. After Consumer Watchdog’s unanimous win in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, CVS petitioned to the high court for review. Review was granted and the case was briefed, but CVS unexpectedly dropped the case, leaving the earlier victory intact. Doe v. CVS Pharmacy, Inc. (9th Cir. 2020) 982 F.3d 1204, cert. granted in part, (2021) 141 S. Ct. 2882, and cert. dismissed sub nom. CVS Pharmacy, Inc. v. Doe, One (2021) 142 S. Ct. 480.

Flanagan is an adjunct professor at Loyola Law School of Los Angeles, where he previously taught the class “Health Insurance Regulation: Law, Policy & Politics.”

Flanagan exposed the illegal practice of health insurers retroactively canceling coverage and authored a law journal article underscoring the need for reform in health insurance rescission law, Healthy State of Mind: The Role of Intent in Health Plan Rescissions, 43 Loy. L.A. L. Rev. 291 (2009).  An “intentional misrepresentation” standard for coverage rescissions, advocated by the article, was adopted in the ACA.

Prior to joining Consumer Watchdog, Flanagan drafted and won passage of one of the nation’s strongest HMO accountability measure, which was signed into law in New Jersey in 2001.

Flanagan received a B.A. in Social/Cultural Anthropology and Rhetoric from the University of California, Berkeley and his law degree from Loyola Law School of Los Angeles. At Loyola Flanagan was a Note and Comment Editor on the Loyola Law Review, and he graduated Magna Cum Laude and is a member of the Order of the Coif, Sayre Macneil Scholars Program, St. Thomas More Law Honor Society, and Alpha Sigma Nu Honor Society.

Flanagan was admitted to the California Bar in 2010.

Jerry Flanagan

KCRA-SAC (NBC) – Sacramento, CA: A Ballot Initiative That Would Enhance Transparency of Elected Leaders

CW's litigation director, Jerry Flanagan, said this measure would overhaul the state's public records laws requiring state agencies and local governments to be faster and more responsive with records requests.

Ballot Initiative Would Overhaul Open Records Laws to Provide Greater Government Transparency & Accountability

70% of CA Voters Approve of the Measure According to a Recent Poll Los Angeles, CA - Embracing the principle that “sunshine is the best...

Court Denies CVS’s Motion To Escape Discrimination Lawsuit Brought By HIV-Positive “John Doe” Plaintiffs

San Francisco, CA - Late Friday a federal court in San Francisco allowed a case brought by HIV-positive “John Doe” plaintiffs against CVS to...

John Doe v. California Department of Public Health et al., Los Angeles Superior Court, Case No. 20STCV3236

A settlement has been reached in a lawsuit affecting consumers enrolled in two California state-sponsored health care programs for individuals living with HIV. Notice...

WABI (CBS) – Bangor, ME; Consumer Watchdog’s Jerry Flanagan Speaks Upon Medical Debt Reform

Litigation Director, Jerry Flanagan, talks about how critical the Medical Debt reform effects are for consumers.

KCAL – Los Angeles, CA; On Your Side: Why Insurance Companies Benefit From ‘Copay Accumulators’ in California

Jerry Flanagan explains how insurance companies are benefiting from ripping off their customers by exploiting their illnesses.

CA Dept. of Insurance Failed to Search For Records Linked To Government Corruption Scandal

The non-profit Consumer Watchdog has filed an appeal in its California Public Records Act (“PRA”) lawsuit against Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara and the California Department of Insurance.


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