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Suit: Crown Hill solicited mental health patient

Posted at 7:18 PM, Sep 28, 2015

An Indianapolis family filed a class action lawsuit against Crown Hill Management Monday alleging the company illegally solicited patients in mental health and healthcare facilities.

Deitra Covington claims a Crown Hill salesperson visited her mother, Vivian Jackson, at Florence House in 2012 and sold her a funeral services contract costing more than $11,000.

Florence House is a residential treatment center for adults with serious mental illness or substance abuse disorders.

Covington's suit states she was given legal guardianship over her mother in 2010 after a doctor diagnosed Jackson with paranoid schizophrenia and psychosis.

According to the lawsuit, Covington was unaware of the contract until she removed her mother from Florence House in 2014, at which point she began receiving bills from Crown Hill. Covington claims when she informed Crown Hill her mother wasn't competent to sign such a contract and asked for a refund, the company threatened to void the contract and keep all payments – approximately $4,167.88 at that point.

Covington's suit states she then learned the Crown Hill representative had arranged for automatic payments to come out of Jackson's account at Florence House where her Social Security payments were deposited.

The class action suit accuses Crown Hill of violating the Indiana Pre-Need Act, which prohibits funeral home representatives from contacting people in hospitals, health facilities or similar institutions "for the purpose of soliciting the sale of prepaid services or merchandise."

The suit also accuses Crown Hill of violating the Indiana Deceptive Consumer Sales Act and of unjust enrichment. It seeks an unspecified amount of restitution.

Covington and Jackson were being represented by the law firm of Cohen & Malad.

Crown Hill had yet to release a statement Monday.

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