Was Dorothy Bound To The Residency Agreement

Dorothy Drury suffered from dementia and chronic confusion. When she was no longer able to manage her own affairs, including decisions regarding medical and financial matters, her son Eddie arranged for her to move to an assisted living facility. Upon admission, she signed a residency contract that included an arbitration clause. After suffering injuries during a fall at the facility, a claim for damages was filed. The institution asked the court to force arbitration. Was Dorothy bound by the residency contract? Discuss. [Drury v. Assisted Living Concepts, Inc., 245 Or.App. 217, 262 pp.3d 1162 (2011)] On appeal, the court ruled that Dorothy`s estate was not bound by the agreement and its arbitration clause. In accordance with the principles of general contract law, a third party beneficiary is considered to accept a contract when it accepts services or attempts to impose rights under this contract. Dorothy was a “third beneficiary” of the residence agreement signed by her son. The crucial topic for the court was Dorothy`s mental efficiency – or lack thereof. Although Dorothy accepted the benefits of the contract (services and housing of the facility), her lack of mental skills meant that her acceptance of benefits did not ratify the treaty.

Background: Dorothy Drury suffered from dementia and her mental abilities were severely affected when her son Eddie took her to the accused`s assisted housing facility. Eddie signed the registration file and the residence agreement of the establishment. At that time, he was not yet Dorothy`s guardian or curator and had no authority for her at the time. From time to time, we publish summaries of interesting fiduciary and estate cases. Today`s article explores a recent decision of the Oregon Court of Appeals in the growing field of older law. The case concerns an elderly woman whose mental capacity is reduced and asks whether she can be considered a third party beneficiary (under contract law) of a residence contract signed on her behalf. The case also addresses the issue of arbitration clauses in residency agreements in retirement homes. Arbitration clauses such as the one at issue in this case have been the subject of a number of recent 9th Circuit cases.

The residency agreement contained a clause stipulating arbitration for all claims or disputes related to the contract or services provided “by us for you”. After about a year in the facility, Dorothée died from an injury she had sustained in a fall. . .

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