Are you getting ready to move a loved one into a long-term care facility? Many nursing home abuse lawyers in Columbus say not to automatically sign every document placed in front of you during the admissions process.
In the stacks of paperwork you may find an arbitration agreement – and signing this form is not recommended. And while you may be pressured to sign, doing so isn’t mandatory. Refrain from putting your signature on the document and, instead, get in touch with an experienced Columbus nursing home abuse lawyer.
What are Arbitration Agreements?
Arbitration agreements are pre-dispute arrangements designed to protect long-term care facilities in the event of dissension over patient treatment and care.
Signing an arbitration agreement means giving up your right to bring a claim of nursing home neglect or abuse to a court of law. Any disputes are to be resolved through arbitration, and the results are binding. If you feel the decision of the arbitrator is unjust, you can’t appeal to a higher court as you could with a lawsuit, and holding the facility accountable for their wrongdoing will be exceedingly difficult, if not impossible.
The Truth About Arbitration Agreements
Many nursing home abuse lawyers are against signing arbitration agreements for a number of reasons. Here’s what long-term care facilities don’t want you to know:
- Arbitration is expensive. The services of an arbitrator are paid for by you and the facility. Very few families can afford arbitration, as it can add thousands to the costs of a claim.
Arbitration isn’t always quite fair. Unlike jurors in a court of law who may have no knowledge of either party to a dispute, arbitrators may be involved in many cases involving the owners and operators of nursing homes. This may result in a bias in favor of a nursing home that would not exist with a jury
- Decisions are final. Whatever the arbitrator decides is what you and your loved one have to live with. You cannot appeal to a higher court.
The most important thing to know about arbitration is that you don’t have to sign the agreement. Nursing homes may make it seem as if the document is mandatory, but they cannot require you to do so as a condition of admission.
Contact a Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer Today
If you’re confronted with an arbitration agreement when admitting your loved one to a long-term care facility, refuse to sign and reach out to an experienced nursing home neglect and abuse lawyer.
In Columbus and the surrounding central Ohio area, the law office of Clark, Perdue & List is here to help protect the rights of your loved one. Our legal team can make sure you can hold the facility accountable in court should any negligent or wrongful actions take place.