New Ruling Bans Pre-Dispute Arbitration Agreements for Nursing Homes that Accept Medicare or Medicaid Funding
Until recently, a claim against a nursing home for abuse, neglect, serious injury or death would most likely be forced into arbitration. Many nursing homes request or require incoming residents to sign an arbitration agreement prior to admission. Once signed, the resident’s right to a trial before a judge or jury is waived. In September, however, that all changed.
The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, a federal agency within the U.S. Health and Human Services Department, issued a final ruling that bans the use of pre-dispute arbitration agreements. The ruling affects all nursing homes that participate in the Medicare or Medicaid programs and applies to new contracts finalized on or after November 28, 2016. Nursing homes that fail to comply will be cut off from Medicare and Medicaid funding.
The Problem With Mandatory Arbitration
For many years the pre-dispute arbitration clauses in nursing home contracts caused significant issues for the injured and the public at large. Waiving the right to a trial by jury affects an injured person’s ability to recover fair compensation and seek justice. Moreover, the waiver of the right to a jury trial and the arbitration process results in the dispute, the alleged wrongdoing, and the outcome being kept from of the public. The secrecy of arbitration hearings prohibits future nursing home residents and their families from being able to discover a history of wrongdoing at a facility.
New Ruling May be Challenged
Proponents of the pre-dispute arbitration clause argue that the agency does not have statutory authority to create such rulings. They maintain that arbitration keeps costs down for the nursing homes, which keeps costs down for the patients. Some critics have also stated that the ruling is in violation of the Federal Arbitration Act, which allows for pre-dispute arbitration agreements.
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has countered those arguments stating, “We have only prohibited pre-dispute arbitration agreements between facilities and residents as a condition of participation in Medicare and Medicaid. If a facility wishes to continue to utilize pre-dispute agreements, it is free to continue in business without Medicare or Medicaid residents.” Of note, 16 state attorneys general signed a letter supporting the Agency’s rule change, stating that pre-dispute arbitration agreements were harmful to nursing home residents.
Choosing to place your loved one into a nursing home is stressful and difficult enough without having to worry about the legal ramifications of fine print. Before you enter into a legal agreement of any kind, it is wise to have an attorney review the documents. Sometimes, hidden clauses can wind up costing you in the long run.
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How can bodily injury liability insurance and uninsured motorist coverage insurance (UM) help you after a car accident in Florida?
Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive
We are pleased to announce the start of our first annual Thanksgiving food drive to benefit Camillus House.
Now through November 17, we will be collecting donations at our office as well as at the offices of McLuskey, McDonald & Hughes, P.A.
If you’d like to participate, please drop off any of the items below at our office:
- Dry Mashed Potatoes
- Vienna Sausages
- Mixed Vegetables
- Dry Pasta
- Spaghetti Sauce
- Ice Tea
Help your child avoid injury this Halloween
As October kicks off, kids and parents alike are beginning to plan for Halloween: costumes, trick-or-treating routes. But no one plans on their child being injured by a driver during the holiday. According to Safe Kids Worldwide,
twice as many child pedestrians
are killed while on the streets during Halloween than on any other day all year. And 12 percent of children 5 or younger are permitted to trick-or-treat alone!
In 2015, there were an estimated 41 million trick-or-treaters out during Halloween night. Whether your child is planning on going out with you or friends, or you’re a homeowner or driver that wants to do your part in keeping Halloween safe, there are many safety issues to be aware of.
|Mitch Panter Awarded 2017 AV Preeminent™ Rating!
Panter, Panter & Sampedro Sponsors Newly Renovated Weight Room at Miami Palmetto High School
We had a wonderful time at the opening of the newly renovated weight room at Miami Palmetto High School. We are proud to be a major contributing sponsor of this facility and look forward to joining in additional efforts to give the students in our community better resources for learning and growth.
|NOTE: The accounts of recent trials, verdicts and settlements contained in this newsletter are intended to illustrate the experience of the firm in a variety of litigation areas. Each case is unique, and the results in one case do not necessarily indicate the quality or value of any other case.
|Panter, Panter & Sampedro, P.A., is an A.V. rated law firm comprised of highly experienced trial lawyers with more than 86 years of combined experience. The firm welcomes referrals from other lawyers and honors the Florida Bar rules related to referral fees. Panter, Panter & Sampedro, P.A., is dedicated to protecting Florida’s families in the areas of catastrophic injury and wrongful death when dealing with personal injury, premises liability, medical malpractice, nursing home neglect, product liability, aviation, defective medical devices, and mass tort.
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|Panter, Panter & Sampedro is accepting pharmaceutical and medical device cases including:
ACTOS, ACTOplus met, ACTOplus Met XR, and Duetact
Bair Hugger Warming Blankets
Bard IVC Filter
(Heart and Lung Perforation Hemorrhagic Pericardial Effusion)
(Chronic Diarrhea Nausea and Vomiting Sprue-Like Enteropathy)
Bisphosphonates – Boniva and Fosamax
Fluroroquinolone Antibiotics – Levaquin, Cipro, Tequin, and Avelox
Januvia, Janumet, Byetta, and Victoza
(Pancreatic Cancer Thyroid Cancer)
Laparoscopic Power Morcellator
Metal-on-Metal Hip Implants – DePuy, Zimmer, Biomet, and Wright Medical
(Device Failure and Loosening Inflammatory Response Metallosis)
(Device Migration, Organ Obstruction, Organ Perforation, Peritonitis, Device Erosion)
Propecia and Proscar
(Sexual Dysfunction, Male Breast Cancer)
Stryker Rejuvenate, ABG II, and Accolade Hip Implants
(Premature Device Failure, Metallosis, Inflammatory Response)
(Blood Clots, Heart Attacks, Stroke)
Transvaginal Mesh, Bladder Slings, and TVT Tape
(Tissue Erosion and Device Failure)
Xarelto and Pradaxa
(Uncontrollable Bleeding Death)
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