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SNH SE Ashley River Tenant, LLC v. Arredondo

The daughter of Hubert Whaley sued owners of an assisted living facility where Mr. Whaley had resided alleging that the facility’s negligence caused his death. The facility moved to compel arbitration based on an arbitration agreement that his daughter had signed. The South Carolina Supreme Court, however, held that the arbitration agreement was not enforceable. The court concluded that a General Durable Power of Attorney and a Health Care Power of Attorney that the father had signed did not contain language that granted his daughter, as her father’s agent, the authority to enter into a pre-dispute arbitration agreement on his behalf.

The nursing home sought review in the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that the South Carolina Supreme Court’s interpretation of the powers of attorney was preempted by the Federal Arbitration Act. In the U.S. Supreme Court, Public Citizen serves as co-counsel for the plaintiff, opposing the petition for certiorari. In December 2021, the Supreme Court denied the petition for certiorari.