Hidden Arbitration Clauses

Hidden Agreement

ABC’s WAS11 had a great article about the inherent unfairness of hidden arbitration clauses in facility admission paperwork. The article explains what happened to Kelli Stein’s mother June Lee. But the same thing happens every day to thousands of residents. Stein wants to reveal a deceptive unfair practice among nursing homes that takes away constitutional. Nursing home residents or their families have unknowingly signed arbitration agreements, often just a few pages in a stack of admissions paperwork.

“She’s like oh we just forgot to get you to sign a piece of paper when we signed you in this morning. And I was just like okay and just signed it because it was just such a rush because there was no explanation of what it was,” said Stein.

“Did you know what you were signing?” asked Vasan.

“No, I didn’t know what I was signing,” she said.

Hidden Abuse and Neglect

Stein gave up her right to seek justice or bring a civil suit against the facility. However, a facility cannot require residents to sign a pre-dispute binding arbitration agreement for admission to a facility.  Stein’s attorney Lindsay Cordes said:

“It allows facilities to escape from being held accountable. We do believe they are intentionally doing it. And we think the reasoning is simple. They do not want the general public and people in our court system to know what is going on in these nursing homes.”

The federal legislation, the FAIR Act would require more transparency, responsibility, and fairness to arbitration agreements in the nursing home setting.