Saturday, October 17, 2009
Nebraska Supreme Court reverses summary judgment in nursing home negligence case holding that son did not have apparent authority to agree to binding arbitration for his mother's treatment. Koricic v. Beverly Enters. - Neb., S-08-1167, 278 Neb. 713 "The appellant, Frank Koricic (Frank), lived with his elderly mother, Manda Baker (Manda), and assisted her in her daily affairs. When her health declined, she was admitted to Beverly Hallmark, a nursing home in Omaha, Nebraska. At Manda’s admission, Frank signed several documents for her. One of the documents was an optional arbitration agreement. This appeal presents the issue whether Frank had authority to act as Manda’s agent and to enter into the arbitration agreement for her. The district court determined that because Frank had actual authority to enter into the arbitration agreement, the agreement bound her estate. Although we agree that Frank had authority to sign the mandatory paperwork for admission, we conclude that Frank did not have authority to sign the arbitration agreement because it was not a condition of admission. We reverse the district court’s order dismissing Frank’s complaint."