In the wake of a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services decision to ban arbitration clauses, nursing homes are striking back. They believe they should be able to prevent residents and their families from suing.
Many nursing homes have fine print in the contracts people sign before admission. These clauses say that the patients and their families give up their right to a judge or jury trial and they will only use arbitration.
The AARP strongly objects to this practice, saying that suing can be the best way to expose wrongdoing. It also helps to combat neglect and abuse in nursing homes.
The federal rule, which only applies to nursing homes that receive federal funding, says that if a facility receives federal funding, they cannot include arbitration clauses in their contracts.
The new rule takes effect on November 28th. Contracts signed prior to this date are still valid.
In a bit of irony, nursing homes are fighting back by suing.
The American Health Care Association claims in its suit that the ruling is a clear example of government overreach. They also argue that arbitration is fair to both parties and cost effective. Others made the argument that arbitration costs far less than court, saving both nursing homes, their residents, and families money.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of abuse or neglect while in the care of a nursing facility, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the law offices of Schenk Smith and let our attorneys help you. Call us today.