Justice Department: Settlement reached in Life Care overbilling lawsuit

Life Care Centers of America, headquartered in Cleveland, Tenn.

The U.S. Department of Justice is apparently close to a settlement with Cleveland, Tenn.-based Life Care Centers of America, the nation's largest private nursing home company, over charges that the company overbilled the government for its costs of treating patients.

In a motion filed Friday, lawyers for the Justice Department asked U.S. District Court Judge Harry "Sandy" Mattice for a 90-day extension in the legal action because "the parties have reached a settlement in principle, subject to all required approvals."

photo Beecher Hunter, Life Care president

photo Forrest Preston

In the motion the government attorneys said that "Life Care has made a settlement offer that the attorneys for the United States will recommend to the Department of Justice official who has the authority to accept or reject the offer."