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The Trump Administration is working to finalize a rule to make clear that long-term care communities can require residents or their families to agree—before a dispute arises—to settle complaints through arbitration rather than through litigation.  Simultaneously in Congress this week, legislation has been introduced in the House and Senate to eliminate the agreements.  Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) introduced comprehensive legislation that would ban the use of arbitration agreements in all employment, consumer, and civil rights cases.

The legislation would allow consumers to agree to arbitration only after the dispute occurs.  It is also expected that a more focused version on pre-dispute arbitration legislation that specifically bans their use in long-term care communities will be reintroduced in the coming weeks.  This legislation is a priority of the American Association for Justice, formerly the Trial Lawyers of America.  This legislation is likely to get a hearing and eventually be brought to the House floor for a vote but has very little chance of passing the Senate or being signed into law by President Trump.  Argentum has consistently opposed attempts in Congress and at the state level to limit the right of residents and operators to enter into arbitration agreements.

 

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