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Trump Weakens Right to Jury Trial

Published on October 2nd, 2017

The Coumbus Dispatch had an article about Trump’s decision to side with the nursing home industry over the vulnerable residents in their care.  Trump has reversed a ban on forced arbitration hidden in nursing home admission contracts.  When the ban is withdrawn, nursing homes will require residents to sign pre-dispute mandatory arbitration agreements before they are provided the care they need.

Consumer advocates, experts, and critics say Trump’s proposal favors nursing homes because residents and their families have unequal bargaining power. They often don’t have time to “shop around” for deals because of the limited number of homes with available beds and the tight time frames to make arrangements for care.  Unlike a court process involving a judge or jury, arbitration usually allows the nursing home to select the arbitrator, a power that is laid out in the nursing home’s contract terms, and the proceedings are conducted in private and kept secret. Arbitration agreements also can set limits on the damages a party can recover. Appeals are not allowed.

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