Work Phone: (859) 226-0312
Robert J. Benvenuti III is a founding member of the Lexington law firm of Barnett Benvenuti & Butler, PLLC. Mr. Benvenuti has been actively involved in the health care industry since 1983. His experience includes serving as a provider, administrator, compliance officer, government official and legal counsel. He has significant experience in health care fraud and abuse, compliance, false claims, government investigations, medical staff issues, internal investigations, civil and administrative liability, professional licensure boards, controlled substances abuse and diversion, and EMTALA, as well as general regulatory and operational issues facing institutional and individual providers. In addition, he assists criminal defense counsel in criminal cases involving health care entities and providers. Mr. Benvenuti also is engaged by legal counsel and their clients to mediate complex health care regulatory and business matters.
In November 2012, Mr. Benvenuti was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives. Mr. Benvenuti currently serves as Vice Chairman and Ranking Member of the Health and Welfare Committee. He is also a member of the Medicaid Oversight and Advisory Committee, the Judiciary Committee, and the Veterans, Military Affairs, and Public Safety Committee.
In February 2004, Mr. Benvenuti was appointed Inspector General for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services where he served until January of 2007. As Inspector General Benvenuti led a staff of approximately 340 employees and was responsible for directing the operations and formulating policy for the Office. Among other things, the Office of Inspector General is charged with investigating and detecting fraud, waste, and abuse in the Medicaid program, as well as allegations of prescription drug abuse and diversion. The OIG is also responsible for conducting complaint investigations and standard surveys involving some 3,000 health care facilities and services across the Commonwealth relative to state licensure requirements and federal certification conditions of participation on behalf of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
Prior to his appointment as Inspector General, Mr. Benvenuti was an attorney with Stites & Harbison, PLLC. From 1998 to 2002 he served as the originating Corporate Compliance Officer for the UK Chandler Medical Center, where he established and directed the Medical Center’s comprehensive compliance program.
Before becoming an attorney, he served in various administrative and management positions, including risk manager, for Baptist Healthcare Systems of Kentucky. Benvenuti also served for five years as a member of a volunteer rescue squad in his hometown of Sparta, New Jersey.
Mr. Benvenuti is a 1998 graduate of the UK College of Law. While in law school he was a member of the National Moot Court Team and a published author. Mr. Benvenuti also earned a Master's of Public Administration from the UK Martin School of Public Policy and Administration in 1991 and his BS degree from the University of Kentucky in 1988.
Mr. Benvenuti is a member of the Kentucky Bar Association, the American Health Lawyers Association and the Health Care Compliance Association. He has served as an adjunct professor at the University of Kentucky College of Law, is the co-author of the Kentucky Health Law Handbook chapter on government enforcement and has published numerous articles on fraud and abuse in the health care industry as well as other operational and regulatory issues facing health care providers. Beyond work, Robert coaches Cal Ripken baseball and has previously coached girls youth soccer. He is also a member of the Board of Directors for Lexington Catholic High School. Together with his wife Susan, he has two children, Annabella and Robert.