SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Legal Newsline) — California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced Aug. 9 that, along with a coalition of 16 other attorneys general, he has submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

In the comments, the coalition recommends that the CMS maintain its pro-patient rule because the rule protects patients’ rights by prohibiting pre-dispute arbitration clauses in nursing home and other long-term care contracts. The rule was enacted in 2016 but might be reversed by the Trump administration. The coalition believes arbitration clauses harm consumers and let facilities stay away from accountability of misconduct.

“The CMS proposal to reverse its ban on pre-dispute arbitration clauses will put seniors at risk by rolling back their rights,” Becerra said. “Californians should not be forced to give up their right to have their day in court if they or their loved ones are the victims of misconduct or harm by a nursing home. Taking away protections for our seniors is yet another example of the Trump administration putting the interests of corporations ahead of the interests of patients.”

Joining Becerra were the attorneys general of Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont and Washington, and Hawaii’s Office of Consumer Protection.

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