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Top NY Court Strikes Rules Limiting Lawyer Access to Assisted-Living Facility Residents

Posted Oct 21, 2011 8:50 PM CDT
By Martha Neil

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Rules intended to protect residents of assisted living facilities from overreaching attorneys went too far in limiting lawyer access to their clients at these facilities, the top New York appeals court held yesterday.

In a 5-2 ruling, the Court of Appeals said policies concerning attorneys drafted by the nonprofit New York Coalition for Quality Assisted Living (NYCQAL) infringed on residents' rights and aren't consistent with standards set by the state department of health, Reuters reports.

In response to the ruling, representatives of such facilities said staff need clear rules to follow in striking a balance between protecting residents' rights to speak with legal counsel and protecting their privacy and called for the health department to offer further guidance.

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