Enforceable Nursing Home Arbitration Agreements

Nursing Home Arbitration Agreement Are Enforceable according to Ga. Supreme Court – United Health Services of Georgia, Inc. v. Norton, et al.; 300 Ga. 736: Issued March 2016.

This case involved a wrongful death action against a nursing home brought by the decedent’s
family. The decedent, through her power of attorney, signed an arbitration agreement upon her admission into the defendant nursing home. Bernard Norton filed the lawsuit – through his son who had power of attorney – against Pruitt Health, Inc.after his wife Lola died in 2014.The lawsuit claims Lola Norton suffered falls, fractures, weight loss and ultimately death because of the nursing home’s inadequate care. The Defendant says Lola Norton signed an arbitration agreement when she entered the facility, and therefore, the lawsuit was inadmissible in court.

The Ga. Court found that the arbitration agreement was enforceable against the heirs in their wrongful death action as the wrongful death claim is wholly derivative of the decedent’s personal injury claim. As such, any defense that a defendant could assert against the decedent, can be asserted against the decedent’s beneficiaries asserting a wrongful death claim.

This finding and the recent moves by Trump’s administration could have serious effects on future NH residents and their families. For more information click here.

Before you or your loved ones enter into any type of agreement with a Nursing Home, consult the attorneys at the Kirbo Law Firm first. We’ll make sure that you’re doing your best by those you love.