UPDATE 06/30/2016: After this article was posted online, the OBA published (05/28/2016 issue) a ruling by the Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals that substantially affects this area of law. Accordingly, the content of this article may be out of date and no longer valid.
Finally, this wraps up our series on nursing homes. Our last article covers an important topic: arbitration clauses in Oklahoma nursing home agreements.
At this point, you know how to identify signs of abuse to the nursing home resident. We’ve also explained the nursing home’s responsibility to prevent accidental falls and injuries caused by falls. You may even have evidence of abuse caught on video, with the use of hidden surveillance cameras in the resident’s room. You have clear grounds for a lawsuit. But you find a document titled “Arbitration Agreement” in the nursing home file. Can the nursing home prevent a lawsuit in court by forcing you and your family to use (and pay for) private arbitration, without a judge or jury?
Nursing Homes Arbitration Agreements are not enforceable in Oklahoma.
As I explained in this video, nursing homes cannot enforce their bogus arbitration agreements. Yet nursing homes still have their residents sign arbitration agreements anyway. I can speculate it is for no other reason than to attempt to scare the residents’ family from talking to a lawyer about a lawsuit.
In Oklahoma, you have a constitutional right to a jury trial in civil cases, including cases against nursing homes. Further, the Legislature has passed a law that prevents the nursing home corporations from forcing residents (and their families) to use arbitration instead of the courts. So if some nursing home administrator tells you that your family cannot sue in court, you know they are lying and simply trying to discourage you from holding them accountable for their wrongdoing.
Get Protection from Experienced Nursing Home Lawyer
Travis Charles Smith represents families harmed by Nursing Homes. His clients are in Oklahoma City and throughout central Oklahoma.
If you have been a victim of nursing home abuse, or if you have family member or loved one who has suffered, call Nursing Home lawyer Travis C. Smith at our Oklahoma City office directly at (405) 701-6016 or send us an email right now explaining your concerns.
We do not charge for consultations and you will pay no attorneys’ fees unless we are able to obtain a verdict or settlement on your behalf.