A California judge dismissed a lawsuit seeking to force the state to collect $500 million from Blue Cross of California in alleged unpaid taxes. The lawsuit, filed last year by the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights, claimed the state's largest health insurer shortchanged California for more than a decade by paying a franchise tax on net profits for its PPO business instead of a tax on gross premiums, as required of other for-profit PPOs. The difference amounted to about $65 million a year, the suit said. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Jane Johnson ruled that the suit had no legal standing and raised a tax policy issue that belonged to regulators, not the courts. The foundation said it was considering whether to appeal the ruling or take the matter to state regulators. The Blues plan is part of WellPoint. -- by Laura B. Benko
Judge dismisses suit over Calif. Blues' PPO taxes
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