Joshua G. Urquhart is senior counsel in the firm’s Health Care practice group. His practice encompasses a wide variety of health care litigation and regulatory areas, with a particular focus on helping clients avoid and resolve disputes with federal and state health care regulators.
Since joining Gordon & Rees in 2013, Mr. Urquhart has represented clients in a number of health care-related litigation and regulatory matters, including several state Medicaid temporary suspension appeals, state and federal anti-kickback and self-referral matters, long term care tort litigation and a major drug defect class action. He also has advised clients extensively on various Affordable Care Act and other federal and state regulatory compliance issues. Finally, Mr. Urquhart writes extensively on health care legal issues, both in Colorado and elsewhere, in the Colorado Health Care Law Blog.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Urquhart served for several years as an Assistant Attorney General with the State of Colorado. While at the Attorney General’s office, Mr. Urquhart represented state health agencies in hundreds of health care-related litigation and regulatory matters before administrative tribunals, state and federal trial courts, the Colorado Court of Appeals, the Colorado Supreme Court, and the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals.
For example, Mr. Urquhart was lead counsel in a high profile dispute involving the decision by HCPF to exclude children with behavioral or mental disabilities from the Colorado Medicaid Children’s Waiver Program. The published decision has been cited by appellate courts in Colorado and elsewhere for the novel proposition that an agency need not engage in formal notice-and-comment rulemaking in order to correct an erroneous prior interpretation of a statute or regulation. Mr. Urquhart also served as lead counsel in several other cases receiving significant media exposure, including a state constitutional challenge to federal cancer screening grants distributed to abortion providers, a First Amendment challenge to Colorado’s indoor smoking ban, and a federal preemption challenge to the state’s air ambulance licensing regime.
Health Care Practice Experience
In addition to representing state agencies and officials in high stakes regulatory litigation, Mr. Urquhart developed substantial experience resolving administrative or regulatory disputes involving various health care issues. This includes provider and facility reimbursement appeals, nursing and assisted living facility rate appeals, 2567 survey and IDR proceedings, provider and facility licensing appeals, Medicaid provider agreement disputes, false claim and civil fraud investigations (including provider withholding actions), EMTALA matters, Medicaid recipient appeals, and Medicaid trust appeals. He also participated in adversarial and quasi-adversarial proceedings between the state health agency and the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Mr. Urquhart handled these matters at all stages of the regulatory adjudicative process, including briefing and arguing the disputes before ALJs, agency hearing officers, final agency decision-makers, and all levels of the state court system on judicial review.
Finally, in addition to his work for the state health agencies, Mr. Urquhart represented several other diverse state agencies and officials (including two Colorado governors). In the health care context, he represented the Attorney General in connection with the Colorado Health Transfer Act, which mandates the Attorney General’s review of certain covered hospital system transactions. Mr. Urquhart also worked on a number of insurance-related regulatory matters and has significant experience in that area tracing back to his pre-government private practice.
Private Practice Experience and Background
Mr. Urquhart was an associate for more than five years with the Chicago headquarters of a large international law firm prior to moving to Colorado in 2007. His practice focused heavily on insurance-related matters, including reinsurance arbitrations, insurance class action defense and (as noted above) insurance regulatory issues.
In addition to his practice experience with law firms and the state government, Mr. Urquhart served as a federal law clerk for Chief Judge Philip P. Simon of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Indiana (in the Chicago suburbs). An avid legal writer, he has published numerous academic and trade articles on a wide variety of issues throughout his career, including recent pieces in the UNLV and Fordham law reviews. Mr. Urquhart graduated with honors from the University of Chicago Law School, where he was on the editorial board of the Chicago Journal of International Law. He received undergraduate degrees in Mathematics, Management Science and History from Southern Methodist University. He is an accomplished runner and has qualified twice for the Boston Marathon in the men’s open (under 35) division, and he boasts a 2:58 marathon personal best.
US District Court for the District of Colorado
US Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit