Nursing Home Arbitration Agreement Upheld

Does your organization include an Arbitration Agreement as part of the admission packet? This document is continually up for debate amongst industry professionals. It is rarely upheld in court and fiercely contested by consumers who claim they did not understand what they were signing at the time of admission.

Regardless of your opinion on the matter, the Supreme Court has upheld an arbitration case in Massachusetts (Miller vs. Cotter), denying the Power of Attorney the right to litigation.

Reinsurance reports: "A former Air Force intelligence officer with a bachelor’s degree in English and 27 years of experience as a claims examiner and manager for an insurance company, pursuant to a power of attorney and health care directive, signed papers admitting his 91-year old father to a nursing home. The arbitration provision was presented as a separate document, was not a requirement for admission and was discussed prior to its execution."

One key factor in this case was that the Arbitration Agreement was presented as a separate document, not attached to the Admission Agreement or contract. And as a facility operator, it is increasingly important that your Admissions personnel understand not just how to present the arbitration clause, but also what it really means.

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