What is a nursing home admission agreement? How can I use it to make sure my loved one’s rights are protected?
Nursing Home Abuse - February 5, 2023
Far too many people neglect reading the nursing home admission agreement before moving their loved one into a facility. They don’t realize until much later that the agreement can be used against them if their loved one suffers any abuse.
Here’s some information on admission agreements and some things to look for if you’re in the process of completing one.
Nursing home admission agreement – the basics
A nursing home admission agreement is a contract between a nursing home and a resident (or the resident’s representative) that outlines the terms and conditions of the resident’s stay in the nursing home. It typically includes information about the services provided, the cost of those services, and the rights and responsibilities of both the resident and the nursing home.
Like any contract, it should be read carefully before signing. It’s essential to understand the terms of the agreement in order to make informed decisions and to ensure that the nursing home will meet the individual’s needs and expectations. Reading the agreement before signing helps avoid misunderstandings or disputes that may arise in the future.
Potential red flags
You’ll want to be on the lookout for the following when reviewing your nursing home admission agreement.
Financially responsible parties
In a nursing home admission agreement, the financially responsible party is typically the resident. You should never sign anything requiring you to sign as a responsible party. Even though federal law prohibits nursing homes from trying to persuade family members to guarantee payment, many of them attempt to do exactly that.
If there’s any ambiguity or confusion about the responsible parties, seek clarification from the nursing home before signing the agreement.
If the agreement requires that disputes be resolved through arbitration instead of in a court of law, this may limit your loved one’s ability to seek recourse if they’re not satisfied with the care they receive. You should consult with a Chicago nursing home abuse attorney if admittance or continued residency requires a binding arbitration agreement.
Waiver of liability for stolen property
A waiver of liability for stolen property in a nursing home admission agreement can be another red flag, as it may indicate the facility won’t take adequate measures to protect the residents’ personal property. A waiver of liability for stolen property essentially means that the nursing home is not responsible for any loss or theft of a resident’s personal belongings.
Waiver of liability for resident health
If the home includes a statement waiving its liability for the health of your loved one, this could indicate that the home isn’t fully committed to providing adequate care and protection. It basically means the facility won’t assume responsibility for any negative health outcomes that may occur while the resident is in their care. This is illegal, so never sign an agreement including this type of waiver.
An eviction clause in a nursing home admission agreement could also be a problem, since it may be a sign that the nursing home reserves the right to discharge a resident without just cause.
An eviction clause typically outlines the circumstances under which a resident can be discharged from the facility, such as if they are no longer able to pay for their care, their health has improved to the point they no longer need care, or if their behavior becomes disruptive to other residents.
Nursing homes are not allowed to authorize an eviction for any other reason. If the agreement states otherwise, don’t sign it until speaking with an attorney.
Don’t wait – Call Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates today
If you feel uncomfortable or unsure about your loved one’s nursing home admission agreement, contact a Chicago nursing home abuse attorney with Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates. Simply call (800) 985-1819 to schedule your free consultation.