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F.B.C. v. MDWISE, Inc.

Court of Appeals of Indiana

April 16, 2019

"F.B.C.", a Pseudonym, Appellant/Cross-Appellee/Plaintiff,
v.
MDWISE, INC., d/b/a MDWISE, MDWISE NETWORK, INC., and MDWISE MARKETPLACE, INC., Appellees/Cross-Appellants/Defendants.

          Interlocutory Appeal from the Marion Superior Court The Honorable Heather A. Welch, Special Judge Trial Court Cause No. 49D01-1801-CT-1781

          Attorney for Appellant Richard B. Kaufman Indianapolis, Indiana

          Attorneys for Appellee Sarah Jenkins Harmony Mappes Anna Behrmann Faegre Baker Daniels LLP Indianapolis, Indiana

          BRADFORD, JUDGE.

         Case Summary

         [¶1] In 2017, F.B.C. and her husband ("Husband") had a health insurance policy with MDwise, Inc., d/b/a MDwise; MDwise Network, Inc.; MDwise Marketplace, Inc. (collectively "Insurer"). In May of 2017, F.B.C. was tested for various sexually transmitted diseases, and Insurer posted a statement ("the Statement") listing testing for the diseases on its web portal which was accessible by Husband as the primary policyholder. Husband viewed the Statement which F.B.C. alleges caused him to cease reconciliation of their marriage and proceed with their pending divorce. F.B.C. filed suit against Insurer alleging, inter alia, disclosure of private facts to a particular public ("Disclosure"), intrusion ("Intrusion"), and outrage ("Outrage"). Insurer moved to dismiss all claims, which motion was granted by the trial court on all claims except Outrage. F.B.C. contends that the trial court erroneously dismissed her claims of Disclosure and Intrusion. Insurer contends that the trial court erroneously denied its motion to dismiss F.B.C.'s Outrage claim. Because we conclude that all three claims should have been dismissed as a matter of law, we affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand with instructions to dismiss F.B.C.'s Outrage claim.

         Facts and Procedural History

         [¶2] In 2017, F.B.C. and Husband were attempting to reconcile before following through with their pending divorce. The couple had a health insurance policy through Insurer, on which Husband was the primary policyholder. On May 17, 2017, F.B.C. was tested for various sexually transmitted diseases. When Husband logged into Insurer's online web portal, he accessed the Statement which listed, inter alia, the diseases for which F.B.C. was tested. As a result, F.B.C. alleges that Husband refused to continue reconciliation and proceeded with the pending divorce.

         [¶3] On January 16, 2018, F.B.C. filed a complaint against Insurer alleging, inter alia, Disclosure, Intrusion, and Outrage. On March 12, 2018, Insurer moved to dismiss all counts pursuant to Indiana Trial Rule 12(B)(6). The trial court granted Insurer's motion to dismiss F.B.C.'s Disclosure and Intrusion claims but denied the motion as to the Outrage claim.

         Discussion and Decision

         [¶4] F.B.C. contends that the trial court erroneously dismissed her claims of Disclosure and Intrusion. Insurer contends that the trial court erroneously denied its motion to dismiss F.B.C.'s Outrage claim. Indiana Trial Rule 12(B)(6) is a motion to dismiss for "[f]ailure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted[.]"

A motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim tests the legal sufficiency of the claim, not the facts supporting it. When ruling on a motion to dismiss, the court must view the pleadings in the light most favorable to the nonmoving party, with every reasonable inference construed in the non-movant's favor. We review a trial court's grant or denial of a Trial Rule 12(B)(6) motion de novo. We will not affirm such a dismissal unless it is apparent that the facts alleged in the challenged pleading are incapable of supporting relief under any set of circumstances.

Thornton v. State, 43 N.E.3d 585, 587 (Ind. 2015) (internal citations and quotations omitted).

         I. ...


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