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Case Law Update: Mandatory Arbitration in Nursing Homes

Fosler v. Midwest Care Center, Il, Inc., No. 2-08-1005 (5-8-09) found that the Federal Arbitration Act preempts the provisions of the Nursing Home Care Act that purport to nullify resident’s waiver of right to commence court action and to jury trial. A nursing home resident, whose daughter signed agreement for her nursing home admission, is barred from pursuing suit for injuries sustained there. Nursing home admission involved interstate commerce and is thus subject to FAA, and agreement provided that any disputes would be resolved through arbitration as governed by FAA. This case will have an unfortunate impact on nursing home law in Illinois.