When an elderly loved one has to move out of their home to a nursing home it can be a difficult time. Usually the decision is made due to the level of care that is needed. Staying at home is no longer an option and so they must be moved to a facility that can take care of their medical and daily needs.
Increasingly, it seems that nursing homes are taking to evicting residents. The AP reported this story seemingly showing that this issue is getting worse. Are these residents being evicted for the right reasons? Is there any recourse that a family can take?
What’s at Stake?
When a person moves into a long-term care facility they become part of that community. In turn, the community also becomes part of their lives moving forward. The residents, care givers, administrators and support staff are all located there. If a person is evicted from their care facility it can be very traumatic and may even affect their long-term health.
Is it Legal?
There are legal provisions that will allow a nursing home or care facility to evict their residents. Typically this becomes the case when a resident becomes undesirable – meaning that the level of care that was required is more than the facility is able to handle. This could be the case where a dementia patient becomes increasingly aggressive and becomes a threat to the health of the other residents. Another example would be a family that was too demanding on the facility, making requests that the facility was unable to comply with. Federal law clearly states the cases where it is acceptable for a facility to request the transfer of a resident.
Stretching the Law
While there is federal law that allows for the rare case of eviction many feel that the law is being stretched too far. Many families simply don’t fight the requests because they don’t understand that the nursing homes are acting outside of the law. In other cases, even if a family does win the legal battle the offending care facilities will still refuse to accept the resident back. In some cases while a care facility can get a citation for a violation there is no fine that goes along with it.
Both Sides of the Case
On one hand nursing homes and care facilities say that what they are doing is legal and justified. The American Health Care Association who often represents these facilities defends the process and says that it is necessary in order to protect facilities and other residents.
Affected families have a different take on the issue, though. Many feel that understaffing of the facility is a major driver in the decision to evict some patients. Others feel that money is a motivator, often citing that a resident is evicted after they are put on Medicaid.
Elder Law Attorneys can Help
If you feel that your loved one has been wrongly evicted, contact Stano Law Group for help today.