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Case Study: Golden Gate Nat'l Senior Care, LLC v. Beavens



This case study fleshes out the tension between the right to litigate one's claims and the policy reasons courts like to enforce arbitration clauses. In this survival wrongful death action against a nursing home, the home invoked an arbitration clause in the resident's admission agreement to try to compel arbitration. The plaintiffs sued in state court nonetheless, and the defense brought a federal action to stay the state proceeding and force arbitration under the Federal Arbitration Act. In deciding whether to exercise jurisdiction over the question, our federal court had to work through not only ADR rules, but also the doctrine of "Colorado River abstention" and the Anti-Injunction Act. The final (and ultimately most decisive) issue was whether a wrongful death action really belonged to the nursing home resident. If not, the resident could not agree to arbitrate it upon entering the facility.

The case can be found here: 

https://casetext.com/case/commonwealth-v-golden-gate-natl-senior-care-llc-1