Sometimes you can get some insight from a relevant court case that you read about, and with this in mind we would like to share a ruling that recently took place in the state of Connecticut that is of interest to people within the elder law community.
South Carolina elder law attorneys will always tell you to engage legal advice before entering into contracts that could have serious financial implications. The case that we are referring to (Cook Willow Health Center v. Judy Andrien) revolves around a woman who entered into an agreement with a nursing home as she was arranging for her mother’s admittance.
There is a law on the books that prevents nursing homes from requiring some type of third-party guarantee of payment before admitting a patient. However, this law does not prevent someone from voluntarily entering into an agreement with a nursing home.
In the case cited above Judy Andrien allegedly entered into a contract whereby she agreed to either make sure that nursing home expenses were paid out of her mother’s personal assets or by Medicaid.
As time went on expenses accumulated and there was an outstanding balance. The nursing home felt as though Ms. Andrien did not live up to the terms of the agreement that she signed and it went about seeking satisfaction.
Andrien cited the law that prevents nursing homes from requiring a third-party guarantee as her defense. However, the court found in favor of the nursing home because as far as it could see execution of the document that Andrien signed was not an absolute requirement.
Given the fact that nursing home care is extraordinarily expensive the cost of a simple consultation with a good elder law attorney before you sign on the dotted line may be well worth the investment when you consider the fallout from a case such as this one.