HealthSouth (HLS) said it got final court approval of a $445 million settlement with plaintiffs in a securities fraud class action.

"We are very pleased to have final court approval of these settlements and to put this issue behind us," said CEO Jay Grinney. "We now can focus our legal resources on asserting our claims against the company's former chief executive officer; former auditors, Ernst & Young; and former primary investment bank, UBS, for the role each of them played in the fraud perpetrated against HealthSouth and its shareholders."

Under the settlement agreements, federal securities and fraud claims brought in the class action against HealthSouth and certain of its former directors and officers will be settled for HealthSouth common stock and warrants valued at $215 million and cash payments by HealthSouth's insurance carriers of $230 million.

In addition, the federal securities class will receive 25% of any net recoveries from future judgments obtained by or on behalf of HealthSouth with respect to certain claims against Richard Scrushy, the company's former chief executive; Ernst & Young, the company's former auditors; and UBS, the company's former primary investment bank, each of which remains a defendant in the derivative actions as well as the federal securities class actions.

The settlement agreement requires HealthSouth to indemnify the settling insurance carriers for any amounts that they become legally obligated to pay to any nonsettling defendants. The defendants didn't admit to any wrongdoing.

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