A Nebraska judge has compelled a Valley Golden Living nursing home to stand trial before a jury, and not an arbitration panel. The landmark nursing home arbitration ruling came from Nebraska’s highest court.
Argument Against Nursing Home Arbitration
When Eugene Cullinane died due to nursing home negligence inside Golden Living Center in Valley, Nebraska, Mr. Cullinane’s family sued the facility in court. In response to the nursing home lawsuit, Golden Living moved to dismiss the case from court and compel arbitration. The facility argued that Mr. Cullinane waived his right to bring a lawsuit in court, based on an alleged agreement signed by the elderly nursing home resident. The decedent’s estate, the Plaintiff in the action, argued that the elderly man was misled and that the arbitration agreement was mischaracterized when explained.
Arbitration Agreement Invalidated
Mr. Cullinane’s family members testified that the arbitration contract was misleading and not explained to the confused, older resident. Additionally, Mr. Cullinane was allegedly not given an opportunity to read the agreement. Instead, his family members testified that the pages were lifted on at the bottom where he was forced to quickly sign. This is not unusual in nursing home arbitration agreements. Typically, the resident is elderly, somewhat confused, easily intimidated and startled upon admission into a new living environment.
The trial judge denied the Defendant’s Motion to Compel Arbitration. On appeal, the Nebraska Supreme Court affirmed the trial judge’s ruling, siding with the victim’s family.
Questions on Nursing Home Arbitration or a GoldenLiving Lawsuit?
If you have a question on a nursing home abuse lawsuit, or are considering suing Golden Living for nursing home negligence, contact our experienced and compassionate nursing home negligence lawyers at 561-717-0817.
For a full text of the nursing home arbitration opinion, see Cullinane v. Beverly Enterprises-Nebraska, Inc., 300 Neb. 210 (June 15, 2018),