A new complaint filed as part of a class-action lawsuitt accuses the Indianapolis-based insurance company WellPoint, which recently changed its name to Anthem, of inflating customers' premiums as part of a large health insurance monopoly.
The lawsuit claims WellPoint holds 61 percent of the health insurance market in Indiana as the result of an ‘illegal conspiracy.'
Court documents allege 37 other Blue Cross Blue Shield Association member health plans have agreed not compete with WellPoint in Indiana, as long as WellPoint limits its offerings in those companies' geographic areas.
The lawsuit says the lack of competition in the state has led to skyrocketing premiums for WellPoint customers.
It seeks refunds for those inflated premiums.
"Because it is ongoing litigation, we can't provide details of the case," Senior Director of Public Relations Tony Felts said in an e-mail. "But we believe the lawsuit is baseless. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield model of service has been in place for more than 80 years and has been validated and enforced by numerous courts and regulatory agencies, including the Federal Trade Commission and Department of Justice."