U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Constitutional Law — due process
A nursing home facility occupied exclusively by patients on Medicaid does not have a property interest in its reputation that it can enforce against the federal government.
“Bryn Mawr has been stigmatized, and as a facility completely filled with Medicaid patients, it is at the mercy of regulators entrusted by statute with enormous discretion. 11 See also Siegert v. Gilley, 500 U.S. 226, 234 (1991) (‘But so long as such damage flows from injury caused by the defendant to a plaintiff’s reputation, it may be recoverable under state tort law but it is not recoverable in a Bivens action.’) (discussing the holding in Paul v. Davis, 424 U.S. at 708–09, that one does not have a liberty interest in his reputation). However, Bryn Mawr has failed to show that any of its rights have been altered. At worst, regulators may keep a stigmatizing record of noncompliance to guide the exercise of their discretion, but without the alteration or extinguishment of a right, Bryn Mawr has not been deprived of a ‘life, liberty, or property’ right. U.S. Const. amends. V and XIV, § 1. With no deprivation of a protected right, Bryn Mawr was not entitled to an opportunity to challenge the deficiency findings in a hearing. Id.”
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Leinenweber, J., Manion, J.